May 22, 2024

2023 Marks Safest Year Ever for Airlines IATA Reports

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced on Wednesday that 2023 had the safest year for commercial air travel on record, despite the significant increase in passenger flights. Among all the flights that took place, only one fatal accident occurred, involving an ATR turboprop belonging to Nepal’s Yeti Airlines during a domestic flight, resulting in the tragic loss of 72 lives.

The IATA disclosed that in 2023, there were a total of 29 accidents that did not result in any fatalities or the loss of an aircraft. This is a significant improvement compared to the 42 accidents recorded in 2022, which claimed the lives of 158 individuals.

According to the IATA, a non-fatal accident is classified as an incident that causes damage amounting to at least $1 million, or 10% of the aircraft’s value. Their statistics specifically pertain to commercial flights and do not cover incidents related to business, military, private, maintenance, or training flights.

The report also highlighted that 2023 witnessed the lowest fatality risk and ‘all accident’ rate ever recorded. The chances of experiencing a fatal air accident were deemed extremely low, with an average person needing to travel by air every day for over 103,000 years to encounter such an incident.

Despite the 17% increase in the number of flights in 2023, totaling 37.7 million, the overall crash rate remained significantly low. The IATA, representing around 320 airlines accounting for 83% of global air traffic, emphasized the commitment to continuously enhance safety measures within the aviation industry.

IATA Director General Willie Walsh underscored the need for ongoing improvements in air travel safety, especially following two high-profile incidents in the early months of 2024. In January, a Japan Airlines A350 Airbus caught fire at a Tokyo airport but was evacuated safely. Meanwhile, in the United States, a panel detached from the fuselage of a Boeing 737 MAX during an Alaska Airlines flight, fortunately resulting in no serious injuries.

As flying continues to be regarded as one of the safest modes of transportation, the IATA remains dedicated to further enhancing safety protocols and preventing accidents within the aviation sector.

1. Source: Coherent Market Insights, Public sources, Desk research
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