Why Air Travel Is the Safest Mode of Transportation

Is flying really the safest mode of transportation? Any certified aircraft dispatcher who has completed rigorous training and passed comprehensive tests will affirm that it is extremely safe. Sheffield School of Aeronautics explains why.

Flying is considered the safest mode of transportation. This isn’t only a statement of opinion. In the 1990s, as air travel became increasingly popular, the idea that air travel is safe gained traction. This reassurance was particularly important for first-time fliers who needed to know they were safer in the sky than on the road.

Checks and Balances

Air travel involves multiple divisions working together to ensure safety. These include the flight crew, air traffic control, and aircraft dispatchers.

Each division relies on and monitors the others to ensure a smooth operation. Aircraft dispatchers, often referred to as the fourth member of the flight crew, share equal responsibility with pilots for the safety of each flight. For instance, any changes in course or altitude require coordination among all three divisions, ensuring that mistakes are caught and corrected promptly.

On the street are drawn a plane, a train, an automobile, and a bus. There are many modes of transportation, but which one is considered the safest? Sheffield Aeronautics explains why air travel is the safest mode of transportation.

Training and Certifications

Obtaining a driver’s license may seem challenging, but the rules and regulations for driving a car pale in comparison to earning a pilot’s license or completing aircraft dispatcher training.

Aircraft dispatcher training is rigorous, and the certification tests are demanding. Completing this training is only the beginning. Gaining the experience needed to work for a major airline takes years. Similarly, pilots must accumulate 1,500 flying hours before qualifying as first officers on a commercial airline.

If you are interested in becoming a flight dispatcher or airline pilot, you will be required to undergo training and become certified.


The advancements in aviation technology are remarkable. Modern aircraft, such as the latest models from Airbus and Boeing, are equipped with advanced safety features that surpass those of the safest cars.

These technological advancements allow for continuous monitoring of everything happening on and around the plane, ensuring any issues are quickly identified and addressed.

Airline Authorities and Regulations

Imagine if your driving was constantly monitored and reviewed by a traffic officer. This is the reality for pilots, air traffic controllers, and aircraft dispatchers.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) meticulously monitors these professionals to ensure they adhere to all regulations and training protocols. Certified aircraft dispatchers are particularly inundated with rules and regulations. Such rules and regulations significantly contribute to the safety of air travel.

How Safe Is Air Travel?

Although some people still fear flying, these fears are largely unfounded. Media coverage of accidents can exaggerate these events, overshadowing the reality of air travel safety.

For a detailed look at various transportation methods, the article “Transportation Safety Over Time: Cars, Planes, Trains, Walking, Cycling” gives an in-depth look at some statistics and studies. Though this article was written in 2014, and the statistical numbers might have changed, the general information it provides in the comparison has not changed greatly. You can also review the article “Train or Plane – What’s Ideal for Your Next Business Trip” from GetGoing. The article was written in 2024, giving a more updated look at transportation safety.

Below are some statistics from 2014 to give you an idea of the difference in safety. These numbers do not include situations affected by terrorism or suicide. Each number reflects the rate of death per billion miles traveled.

  • Air travel, 0.07
  • Motorcycles, 212.00
  • Cars, 7.30

With ongoing advancements and strict safety protocols, the skies continue to be a safe mode of transportation.

Why Is the Airplane the Safest Mode of Transportation?

Some might still wonder, “Why is air safer than car Travel?” Several factors explain why airplanes are safer than cars, but the most important reasons are listed here.

  • The density of cars on roads increases the likelihood of accidents. In contrast, the skies are less crowded, reducing the chances of in-air collisions.
  • Airplanes are marvels of modern engineering, designed with passenger safety as a top priority. From seats that can withstand 16 times the force of gravity to fireproof materials, every aspect of an airplane is built to ensure safety.
  • Air travel involves more stringent regulations and comprehensive checks and balances than car travel. Flying an airplane requires much more training and adherence to safety standards than driving a car. This level of oversight and the advanced technology in aircraft make flying significantly safer than driving.
  • The aviation industry is heavily regulated, with authorities enforcing strict safety protocols. Additionally, aircraft are equipped with multiple backup systems to handle potential failures, making air travel extremely safe.

These rigorous safety standards apply across all ticket classes, ensuring that every passenger is equally protected. After considering all the factors, one can conclude air travel is the safest mode of transportation.

Why Is Flying So Much Safer for International Travel?

International air travel adheres to stringent global standards set by organizations like the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). These standards ensure uniform safety practices worldwide.

Standardized procedures minimize human error, providing a safer and more predictable aviation environment. Additionally, international flights are meticulously planned to navigate around adverse weather conditions, ensuring passenger safety.

More About Sheffield School of Aeronautics

Sheffield School of Aeronautics is dedicated to training the next generation of air travel professionals. We offer in-person and online courses to help you become a certified aircraft dispatcher. Those listed below only represent some of the training available:

Contact us online today to learn more about how we can help you achieve your career goals in the aviation industry.

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    “I wanted to tell you I got the job offer from Expressjet, and start next month! I think a couple others from class were hired as well. It just shows the Sheffield reputation when I see graduates from other schools complaining that they can’t get an interview – I wasn’t even back home to Minneapolis […] Dan Gustafson
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    “After receiving my certificate, I joined a class of 4 experienced dispatchers for Part 121 initial training. Without experience, my preparation at Sheffield enabled me to become active at the same time after the initial training.” PR PR
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