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Where To Sit In A Crash  
User currently offlineQantasclub From Australia, joined Nov 2003, 757 posts, RR: 2
Posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 4590 times:

Whilst on the subject of crashes, lets say you were sitting on a 744 or wide-body which dived and was headed to the ground, where do people think the highest proportion of survivors come from? The tail? The nose? over the wing? Would be interested to hear from any structural engineers on this.

Yes, we all know that flying is the safest form of travel, but this is just in THEORY......


Long Haul is the only way to go
29 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineWing From Turkey, joined Oct 2000, 1560 posts, RR: 24
Reply 1, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 4556 times:

If possible sit a place not inside the crashing airplane  Smile




Widen your world
User currently offlineHlywdCatft From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 5321 posts, RR: 6
Reply 2, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 4464 times:

IF a 747 is diving headfirst into the ground, i dont think anyone is going to survive unless the plane was only a couple hundred feet to begin with

User currently offlineGmonney From Canada, joined Jan 2001, 2159 posts, RR: 20
Reply 3, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 4456 times:

YA stay in the terminal...don't get on the aircraft...

Grant



Drive it like you stole it!
User currently offlineNoUFO From Germany, joined Apr 2001, 7948 posts, RR: 12
Reply 4, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 4382 times:

There is no such thing like the "safest seat" on an aircraft. Not even in theory.


I support the right to arm bears
User currently offlineTokolosh From Netherlands, joined Sep 2001, 366 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 4342 times:

If I remember correctly, there's a book titled "It doesn't matter where you sit". It's impossible to predict the safest spot.


Did the chicken or the egg get laid first?
User currently offlineKilavoud From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 4337 times:

You should ask your Airliner to put an ejector seat at your disposal for your next flight. Big grin

Regards. Kilavoud.



User currently offlinePIA777 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1738 posts, RR: 6
Reply 7, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 4331 times:

The tail section is probably the best place to sit because it is the furthest from the nose, which is likely to hit the ground first. Unless if the plane stalls and hits tail first, then the nose section would be the best. But over all there is no safe place to sit when a plane is crashing.

-PIA777



GO CUBS!!
User currently offlineTxAgKuwait From United States of America, joined Aug 1999, 1803 posts, RR: 42
Reply 8, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 4279 times:

You want to sit in the "black box."

You know, you always hear in the post-crash news report....."crash investigators have located the black box and it is intact...undamaged."

So if an airline has an assigned seat policy, I always ask for a seat inside the black box.


User currently offlineLeezyjet From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2001, 4041 posts, RR: 53
Reply 9, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 4211 times:

It all depends on the type of crash as to where is the best place to sit, so there is no way of predicting where is best.

If I'm in Econ, I prefer to sit towards the back, as the back usually snaps off, and an aircraft has yet to fly backwards into a mountain, but it doesn't really make that much differance to me as you never know what is going to happen.

Most of the people killed in the 1985 Manchester 737 disaster were in the back, whereas in the Sioux City crash, survivors came from all sections of the a/c, and in the MD-11 crash at HKG, all but 3 survived.

So nowhere on an a/c is really any safer than anywhere else.

 Smile



"She Rolls, 45 knots, 90, 135, nose comes up to 20 degrees, she's airborne - She flies, Concorde Flies"
User currently offlineSouthernCRJ From Argentina, joined Sep 2001, 180 posts, RR: 3
Reply 10, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 4112 times:

Not really sure, but I've heard that regarding the plane's structure, to be seated over the wing is the safest position you can be during a crash. I hope I'll never have to prove it  Big grin.

Best regards.


User currently offlineFoxBravo From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 2996 posts, RR: 4
Reply 11, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 4052 times:

LOL, TxAgKuwait! Good strategy.  Smile


Common sense is not so common. -Voltaire
User currently offlineSegmentKing From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 4021 times:

I'd want to be in a flight attendant jumpseat.. they're built to withstand like 20 G's or something nowadays...

-n


User currently offlinePIA777 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1738 posts, RR: 6
Reply 13, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 4016 times:

Hey why not make seats that are like the black box. Sell them for a price of $3,000. only a dumb, rich person would get those seats. (My thoughts)


-PIA777



GO CUBS!!
User currently offlineYqfca From Canada, joined Jun 2001, 156 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 3985 times:

The strongest section of a plane is the wingbox. So....sitting on top of it is the best place. However, the wingbox is ususally also a fuel tank. So the second strongest fuselage section is the tail where the diameter is the smallest. Of course some aircraft have fuel tanks in the horizontal stabilizers and makes it difficult to stay clear of fuel. Thing is that it largely depents on what kind of crash. CFIT (Controlled Flight Into Terrain) is the most common type of crash and there the tail section is your best bet.
A crash on water recuces the threat of fire and the over wingbox is better spot to be.


User currently offlineWing From Turkey, joined Oct 2000, 1560 posts, RR: 24
Reply 15, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 3981 times:

If you want to live longer,take my word as a pilot,and sit on the last seat in the back.It will sure make you live half a second longer than the passenger at row 1, on a nose dive crash. Smile


Widen your world
User currently offlinePIA777 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1738 posts, RR: 6
Reply 16, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 3952 times:

WING, shoudn't you try to prevent the crash from happening in the first place? You are the pilot you know.


-PIA777



GO CUBS!!
User currently offlineMD88Captain From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 1330 posts, RR: 20
Reply 17, posted (10 years 9 months 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 3888 times:

Sit right by an EMERGENCY EXIT. If you survive the impact, you need to get away from the aircraft. If it's a survivable crash, don't be the person overcome by smoke and disorientaion. Many people have survived the impact only to die by smoke and fire because they could not get away from the aircraft.

User currently offline3green From Australia, joined Nov 2000, 144 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (10 years 9 months 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 3864 times:

I remember back in`89, when the UA DC10 crash landed after severe hydraulic failure, most of the survivors were in the mid section, and shortly after, i read in a newspaper, many people who knew they were flying on a DC10 when booking their tickets began asking to be allocated in the mid section of the aircraft, does anybody else remember this?

User currently offlineSevenair From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2001, 1728 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (10 years 9 months 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 3766 times:

I like to be next to the drinks trolley, hopefully it will be stacked with lots of Bailey's Minis + Bailey's Glide, mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

User currently offlineBrianhames From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 795 posts, RR: 2
Reply 20, posted (10 years 9 months 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 3732 times:

they're built to withstand like 20 G's or something nowadays

Yeah but the human body isn't.


I remember seeing on a TV show sometime that your body is able to tolerate 80% of the forces encountered in your "average" crash, and that it's usually the fire that will kill you. They were saying this while running the footage of that remote control 707 they crashed with the new type of jet fuel or whatever. But I don't know if there is any real validity to those statements.

I'd say there probably isn't a safest seat on the plane, its impossible to tell. But there were no first class survivors of the UAL DC-10 in Sioux City.

Brian


User currently offlineQantasclub From Australia, joined Nov 2003, 757 posts, RR: 2
Reply 21, posted (10 years 9 months 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 3638 times:

Interesting replies, guys. There seems to be 2 schools of thought: either the tail or over the wing. My personal feeling is that although the wing is the most secure area structurally, it is also LOADED with fuel and is likely to be the first bit to combust. So i would go for the tail. Just thought someone may have compiled some statistics on the subject.
Most of the SQ taipei crash survivors were inthe tail I think.
In reality, it's hard to know I guess, coz all crashes, point of impact, angle of descent, etc, are different.



Long Haul is the only way to go
User currently offlineLparky From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 167 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (10 years 9 months 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 3592 times:

between two really overweight passengers?

User currently offlineAirdude66 From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 187 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (10 years 9 months 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 3577 times:

Well, as part of an emergency response team - we have studied many crashes. Therefore you can reason this out as follows.

Unless you are seated in the cockpit or forward F/A jumpseat - I would not sit in front of the wings unlees my insurance was paid up. In a serious disaster, this group will not make it.

Over wing seating/exit rows. Exit seating was designed for emergency evac. In the event of a crash, the distortion of the structure from impact will probably make it impossible to remove the window exit anyway. Typically, the a/c will break away in front of the wing, behind the wing or both. Since you are seated on top a fuel tank, if it has not already combusted it will have been breached from impact and could very possibly be ignited as a result of the a/c breaking up. You will probably be engulfed in flames or quickly (seconds) be overcome by toxic fumes. I would not select these seats.

I do agree with the last row of the aircraft. If the planes dives nose first - the tail will break away. If you have a level impact - the tail will break away.
If you lose power and impact tail first - the tail will act as a fulcrum point and slam the rest of the aircraft into the ground and break away. You must remember that after you assume the crash position, you must remember to stay in that position for a minute after everything comes to a halt. DO NOT LOOK UP - as a result of the impact, there could possibly be a fireball the will surge through the cabin or down the aisle. Wait, if there is one you will hear it coming. Remember, most likely your exit is behind you. You must be familiar with your a/c briefing card as to how to operate the doors at your exit and/or blow the tail cone. MEMORIZE this. You must be able to close your eyes and visualize the demonstration pictures - YOU WILL BE OPENING THE DOOR IN DARKNESS more than likely due to spoke. Always crawl as low as you can. The smoke is HIGHLY TOXIC. Believe it or not, I always travel with a bottle of water that I place inside the seat back pocket in front of me in the event I need to wet my shirt to wrap around my mouth to breath. It will buy you those critical few seconds you will need. Also remember that sitting in the back row - all aircraft seats break forward - in your in the back row, you will not have anyone on top of you or anyone that hits you and adds to a secondary impact for you from behind.

If electric lines are involved you may not know. Try to exit the aircraft without touching the aircraft and the ground at the same time. Jump if this can be done without causing additional injury.

I hope this helps. I still believe flying is the safest way to travel. I firmly believe that those who are educated and fully prepared can and will survive a disaster. The briefing cards in your seat back pocket are an invaluable source of survival information.

Just as with everything else in life. Skiing, driving, swimming etc. - be educated, be prepared and never be indifferent.


User currently offlineCanadianNorth From Canada, joined Aug 2002, 3389 posts, RR: 9
Reply 24, posted (10 years 9 months 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 3541 times:

if your in a crash, a "safe seat" dont really exist eh...


CanadianNorth



What could possibly go wrong?
25 JeckPDX : wow, that was quite the analysis. guess ill be sitting in the last row from now on
26 Qantasclub : Thanks for that reply, Airdude. Same here, JeckPDX. Back seats from now on.
27 Wing : WING, shoudn't you try to prevent the crash from happening in the first place? You are the pilot you know. PIA777, And your point is?
28 Moolies : Remember that Saudi plabne that decided not take take off onthe run way and just carrie don going and the front snapped off as it went into a ditch, d
29 PIA777 : WING, I was just saying that. Don't get offended by it. i was just joking around. -PIA777
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