It’s one of the most common questions asked by people who have an innate fear of flying in order to maximise their chance of survival in the case of an accident. So where is the safest seat?
Well, unfortunately both Boeing and Airbus will tell you that there’s no one place that is the safest on an airliner as accidents involving severe injuries or loss of life, while extremely rare, are usually all quite different.
That said, a study carried out by Popular Mechanics in 2007, which analysed all crashes since 1971 came to the conclusion that those sitting in seats towards the rear of the aircraft had a higher survival rate (69%) than those sitting in the centre (56%) or front sections (49%).
This study was backed up by a live experiment carried out by UK television Channel 4’s documentary, The Plane Crash, in 2012 when a Boeing 727 filled with crash test dummies and cameras was remotely crashed into a Mexican desert to analyse the outcome. It was concluded that those in the front of that aircraft wouldn’t have survived whereas those at the rear would have emerged with little or no injuries. Check out the video here.
So while officially there might not be a safest place, popular opinion would suggest that the back of the aircraft is safer.
Makes that economy seat seem all the better now!
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