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Gulliver Business Travel
A chapter of accidents
2010 was not a particularly good year for airline safety. Data put together by Ascend, which provides information to the aviation industry, show that the year's rate of one fatal accident for every 1.3m flights compared poorly with one per 1.5m in 2009 (the safest year ever). Similarly, the number of fatal accidents rose from 23 in 2009 to 28 in 2010. And passenger deaths on passenger revenue flights rose from 609 to 726, of whom 472 died in four main accidents.
Yet the grimness of the numbers should not hide the fact that air travel is becoming, in general, safer. The trend line on the chart below, which counts accidents to passengers on regular passenger services, suggests as much. Ascend's end-of-year report puts it thus: "Despite the relatively poor performance in 2010, we believe that air safety is still improving and this has resulted in 100 fewer fatal accidents during the last decade than in the 1990s - on average, 10 fewer fatal accidents a year."
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