eugdog
Posts: 426
Joined: Mon Apr 02, 2001 11:32 pm

The Dumbest Thing I Have Heared

Sun May 19, 2002 11:07 pm

Here it is

"air travel is the safest way to travel on a per mile basis -but it is no safer then cars on a per trip basis"

This is stated by many aviation journalists and aviation safety activists.

This maybe true but it is grossly misleading. Most car trips are under a few miles (90% under three miles in England). How can you compare that to an average air trip of several hundred miles. Should you compare a 3 mile trip to the groceries with a 1000 mile flight to another city?

Moreover the risk of accident from car journeys is preportional to miles driven - whilst aviation risk is only perportion to each take off and landings.

Perhaps the most useful statistic is the risk per journey of a given stage lenght where either car and plane can be used. ie say 300-500 journey. This eliminates the 3 mile grocery run which planes are not practical. It also eliminates the long haul flight where cars are practical
 
H. Simpson
Posts: 933
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2001 7:30 am

RE: The Dumbest Thing I Have Heared

Sun May 19, 2002 11:10 pm

Based on what you said, the statement is essentially BS
 
backfire
Posts: 3467
Joined: Fri Oct 06, 2006 8:01 am

RE: The Dumbest Thing I Have Heared

Mon May 20, 2002 12:44 am

Per-trip comparison is not unreasonable at all if taken from the passenger's point of view. It's no consolation to say that an aircraft managed to fly 9,999 miles in perfect safety (and more safely than a car) if the damn thing crashes on approach in the last mile -- you can't separate the "safe" miles from the "unsafe" one. It's an all-or-nothing deal.

Uneducated nonsense about statistics and safety doesn't just come from journalists and safety gurus either; there's no shortage of aviation enthusiasts and spotters who know jack-all about statistics too.
 
EGGD
Posts: 11880
Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2001 12:01 am

RE: The Dumbest Thing I Have Heared

Mon May 20, 2002 3:05 am

Uhhh... not really. If you get in your car and drive away now, you have less chance of dying than if you get on a plane and fly away....
 
744rules
Posts: 391
Joined: Sat Mar 30, 2002 3:34 am

RE: The Dumbest Thing I Have Heared

Mon May 20, 2002 3:12 am

I think the most dangerous part of flying, is the trip to the airport.
BTW some politician once said : There are small lies. There are big lies. And you have statistics
 
backfire
Posts: 3467
Joined: Fri Oct 06, 2006 8:01 am

RE: The Dumbest Thing I Have Heared

Mon May 20, 2002 4:41 am

Statistics are fine. But they are very sensitive to interpretation. That's where the art lies, and too many people are utterly crap at understanding statistics and how they can and can't be interpreted.
 
wingman
Posts: 2900
Joined: Thu May 27, 1999 4:25 am

RE: The Dumbest Thing I Have Heared

Mon May 20, 2002 4:55 am

How about comparing the relative safety by dividing number of fatalities into the total number of flyers or drivers in any given year. I'm sure someone is already calculating thsis and seems much fairer to me at least. X number of poeple get on the road, Y number of people die...X number get on planes, Y number die. There's no other way to look at it because this simple ratio takes into account all flyers (private, commercial, military etc) and all drivers (moms, truckers, bus passengers etc.) and the distances each segment drives is relative to a "matching" segment in the other category of transport. Then again, I'm a complete failure at math so could be missing something here.

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