Friday, August 8, 2014

Think air travel is risky? Try driving a car

Filed under: Safety



It was a terrible stretch for aviation.

In an eight-day span last month, three commercial plane crashes killed 462 people. By now the flight numbers and grim circumstances are familiar: Malaysia Airlines flight 17, downed by a missile over the Ukraine. TransAsia 222, crashed on approach to an island off Taiwan. One day later, Air Algerie 5017, lost during a dust storm in Mali.

In an eight-day span last month, three commercial plane crashes killed 462 people.

But it was a worse stretch for automobiles, and not that many noticed.

Over the same eight-day period that claimed hundreds in those high-profile air disasters, an estimated 735 people perished in traffic accidents in the United States alone. Across the globe, cars killed an estimated 28,493 over the same eight days and injured thousands more.

The air crashes brought the usual fear-of-flying tropes from the news media. Aside from the à-la-carte headlines in local news outlets, the traffic deaths generated their usual silence. Maybe it's time we pay more attention.

"Unless you're a skydiver or someone who feeds sharks, getting in a car is the single most dangerous thing you do," said Bruce Schneier, a security expert, policy analyst and essayist. "The same number of people who died in the 9/11 terrorist attacks die every month in car crashes, but it's just so normalized, we don't talk about it or think about it. But it's crazy how dangerous it is."

Continue reading Think air travel is risky? Try driving a car

Think air travel is risky? Try driving a car originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 07 Aug 2014 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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