To have a good overview of Aviation statistics year 2022 and understand “how safe (or not) flying is”, we have to look into numbers and graphs. From a first glance, the answer to the above question is not only “yes, flying is safe” (and safer every year) but it’s one of the safest worldwide way of traveling.
Of course there are exceptions, by area of operations, by country, by operator, but still, from the 2022 statistics we can say that before being involved in an air crash, ones need to fly for 2263 years (every day).
Said all that, let’s look first of the numbers.
It’s undisputed that COVID-19 grounded majority of airplanes worldwide and overall aviation industry: with the easy of most governments’ restrictions related to COVID-19, 2022 flights increased of 25% compared to 2021 although are still minus 31% if compared with 2019.
Aviation statistics year 2022 accounted for 39 accidents worldwide, were 29 during year 2021.
This number takes into account Commercial aviation operations (scheduled or charter, passengers or cargo flights) and with a MTOW (Maximum Takeoff weight) of 5700 kg or more.
Number of accidents increased from 29 during 2021.
Although – as said above – number of flights increased by 25% (2021 compared to 2022), this increase of number of accidents (from 29 to 39) made the 2022 yearly rate higher compared to 2021, 1.21 per million flights (2022) compared to lower 1.13 (2021).
In terms of fatalities, 5 accidents “only” resulted in majority of fatalities in 2022 where the first one (China eastern Airlines) accounted for majority of fatalities (132 out of 158 total)
These accidents are:
– 21-03-2022 – China Eastern Airlines – B737-800 – 132 fatalities – possible suicide
– 06-11-2022 – Precision Air services – ATR42-300 – 19 fatalities – runway overrun
– 10-09-2022 – Tracep Congo Aviation – AN28 – 3 missing – airplane reported missing
– 03-11-2022 – Goma Express – Let 410 – 3 missing – contact lost enroute
– 20-09-2022 – Saeta Perù – BAE Jetstream 31 – 1 fatality – runway overrun on takeoff
Few accidents also involved fatalities “on the ground” and not directly related with the flight itself.
One happened in Guinea (a motorcycle crossed the runway and collided with a landing airplane, both people on the motorbike died) a second one happened in Perù (a takeoff airplane collided with a fire brigades truck, both firemen died) and a third one in USA (a member of ground staff was ingested into the engine of an airplane arriving at the parking).
Last number to talk about is the overall safety of aviation worldwide, which is double safer compared with numbers of 10 years ago: the accidents per million quoted above (1.21) was 2.31 in year 2013.
This 1.21 accident / million flight number is of course a worldwide average.
If to go into geographic area detail (chart above), the same number rise to 8.7 in Africa (AFI region) while is totally above average of other areas.
So what’s our take away of Aviation statistics year 2022 ?
Commercial aviation was slightly less safe in 2022 compared with 2021 but – if to look into the big picture – the process of increasing safety level is evolving year after year, with ups and downs, and trend is constantly going to the good side.