Whenever an airliner accident happens it receives a lot of news coverage because they tend to cause alarm amongst the general population. Over the years NTSB investigations into these accidents has resulted in blame being assigned to the pilots more often than not. The truth is, however, few accidents can be blamed exclusively on pilot error. It is important to remember that pilots are human too, and flying airplanes is, and always has been, a dangerous profession. Anytime something as heavy as a metal airplane collides with the ground a great deal of energy is released and can have disastrous effect.
Not All Airline Accidents Are Preventable
On April 24th 2013 24/7Wallst posted "The Nine Most Common Airplane Accidents". For example, since 2010 there have been seven accidents as a result of bird strikes as well as another three as a result of shining laser beams into the cockpits of landing aircraft. Another major cause of airline accidents are turbulence, and turbulence has become more prevalent in recent years. Mechanical failures are easier for pilots to deal with because they train for those events - its the unexpected or human factor accidents that take pilots by surprise.
Number 1 - Landing Gear Problems
Landing gear problems are fairly common with 8 having occurred since 2010. Because landing gear need to go up and down on a regular basis it is not unusual for some metal part to fail rendering the landing gear inoperative or - worse yet - failing upon weight being placed on it. Here is an example of a nose landing gear collapse:
Number 2 - Bird Strikes
Bird strikes are quite common, but they do not usually result in an accident. However, since 2010 there have been 7 serious accidents as a result of bird strikes. Perhaps the most famous was the landing in the Hudson of Flight 1549. Here was the result of that incident:
Number 3 - Decompression
Decompression is usually a minor issue; however, there have been a number of instances where the fuselage split open endangering both the aircraft and passengers. Since 2010 there have been 5 such incidents by U.S. airliners. Here is the result of one of these incidents:
Number 4 - Taxiing Accidents
Sometimes accidents happen before the aircraft can even get to the takeoff runway. Since 2010 there have been 4 incidents of injury and aircraft damage as an airliner was taxiing to the runway. Here is an image of one of the more minor incidents where an engine attempted to swallow a cargo container:
Number 5 - Engine Problems
Engines fail on a regular basis, and pilots are well trained to deal with them. Once an engine problem develops it is important for the pilot to get the aircraft on the ground as soon as possible. Here is an image of an airliner with an engine fire:
Number 6 - Lasers
With improvements in technology laser pointers have become both more common and more powerful. For some unexplainable reason some nuts think shining a laser beam into the cockpit of a landing airliner is something fun to do. Since 2010 there have been 3 serious incidents involving the use of lasers to blind pilots, in 2 of the cases causing serious injury to the pilot's eyes. Why would anyone do this?
Not A Complete List
This is not a complete list, but rather a few of the more common airline accident types that have plagued airlines since 2010.
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