A Ukrainian International Airlines 737 with at least 170 people on board crashed on Wednesday due to technical problems soon after taking off from Tehran's Imam Khomeini airport, Iran's official news agency IRNA reported. Boeing Co said it was aware of media reports regarding a plane crash in Iran and was gathering more information.
The number of people killed in large commercial airplane crashes fell by more than 50% in 2019 despite a high-profile Boeing 737 MAX crash in Ethiopia in March, a Dutch consulting firm said.
Aviation consulting firm To70 said there were 86 accidents involving large commercial planes - including eight fatal incidents - resulting in 257 fatalities last year. In 2018, there were 160 accidents, including 13 fatal ones, resulting in 534 deaths, the firm said.
To70 said the fatal accident rate for large airplanes in commercial passenger air transport was just 0.18 fatal accident per million flights in 2019, or an average one fatal accident every 5.58 million flights, a significant improvement over 2018. The fatality numbers include passengers, air crew such as flight attendants and any people on the ground killed in a plane accident
Over the last two decades, aviation deaths around the world have been falling dramatically even as travel has increased. As recently as 2005, there were 1,015 deaths aboard commercial passenger flights worldwide, the Aviation Safety Network said.
In 2017, aviation had its safest year on record worldwide with only two fatal accidents involving regional turboprops that resulted in 13 deaths and no fatal crashes of passenger jets.
Last week, 12 people were killed when a Fokker 100 operated by Kazakh carrier Bek Air crashed near Almaty after takeoff. In May, a Russian Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircraft caught fire as it made an emergency landing at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport, killing 41 people.
The figures do not include accidents involving military flights, training flights, private flights, cargo operations and helicopters.
With Inputs from Reuters