It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane…No, wait…Planes Don’t Fly

I know there’s that statistic that says flying is safer than driving. I know there are many, many more car wrecks in a day than there may be plane crashes in a whole year. But think of the differences: one car crashing into another may, at the very most, kill what? 10 people? Maybe 14 if both vehicles are 7 passenger SUV’s? Whereas, a crashing plane may be carrying over one hundred passengers?

If you’ve been following the news any since we entered 2009, you’ve probably noticed the recent string of plane crashes. In fact, in the last two months alone there have been five large scale plane crashes. This site, 1001 Crash, actually shows you a list of recent plane crashes, including the location, type of plane, etc. However, this only includes these large scale crashes.

How many small planes have crashed this year? I found reports of at least five the last time I checked. So, if we total it all, that’s 10 crashes in the last few months. Do you ever recall hearing about this many plane crashes before? Well… maybe not, but statistics show that this number of plane crashes in a year isn’t too absurd. But the fact that we’re only three months in and already have this number…that is what I find a bit unusual.

Is it average to lose this many planes a year? Is it coincidence? Or is something going wrong with our technology? I’ve seen web sites where people are arguing that the magnetosphere around the earth is disappearing, so all our machinery is failing. I’ve heard just as many people talking about aliens and government conspiracies. These people are all coming up with their own theories because they’ve noticed the strange increase in crashes. What’s the real cause? Who knows…

But I think maybe we just need to train our professionals better. I watched a documentary about a plane crash that was caused when a technician covered one tiny sensor with tape while he was cleaning the plane, as per protocol, but then forgot to remove it. Another documentary that covered several plane crashes all caused by the pilots misusing auto-pilot.

How many people have to die because pilots are forgetting that auto-pilot doesn’t think and can’t adjust itself if unexpected conditions appear? I don’t know about you, but I don’t want a pilot that doesn’t pilot the plane. If he’s more comfortable with auto-pilot than with flying the plane himself, get him out from in front of those controls.

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