Air travel is one of the safest modes of travel when we take into account the distances and freedom that it allows us. And yet, we still remain obsessed with aviation disasters. What caused these accidents? Whose fault was it? In her series of books, Why Planes Crash, Sylvia Wrigley investigates the worst aviation disasters of the twenty first century.
Accidents are invariably a combination of factors, and pilot decisions and (in)actions can be the result of a culmination of those factors. A strong investigation will not only consider the cause but the contributing factors: those actions or inactions which could have saved the day but didn’t. The objective in accident investigations around the world is not to cast blame, but to understand every aspect so that we can stop it happening again.
The second book in the Why Planes Crash series covers incidents and accidents in 2002, including two in-flight suicides, the Sknyliv airshow disaster, how to write off a Saab 2000, an aircraft collision over the runway, a dramatic river landing, Air China 129's flight into a Korean mountain, and finally, an in-depth view of the Überlingen mid-air collision.
Unravelling the mystery is the most important step.