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Why do people feel like cars are safer than planes?

| Dec 10, 2016 | Car Accidents

The statistics show that planes are far, far safer than cars as a means of transportation. For instance, in 2008, there were 1.27 fatalities for every 100 million miles that were driven in motor vehicles. The same year, there were just 20 accidents involving planes in the United States. There were a mere five injuries and no deaths.

However, go to the airport and it’s not hard to find someone who looks very nervous getting on the plane. It’s even easier to find these people if you’re already in the air and the plane hits some turbulence. You don’t often see people with that same nervous look in their eyes when they’re about to go to the grocery store, even though more people are hurt and killed driving to the store than in planes.

The problem, experts say, is that facts alone aren’t what influence the perception of risk. For example, people have no control over a plane, so they feel more nervous than when they’re in control of a car. They trust themselves not to make mistakes, and it’s easier to ignore the fact that many people are killed in accidents due to the mistakes of other drivers. That illusion of control helps them feel safer than they are.

There’s also the fact that a plane crash often ends with the loss of nearly everyone on the plane. It’s catastrophic. People are afraid because they assume a plane crash means they’ll be killed, while they’re likely to live through a car accident.

No matter how you feel about driving or flying, it’s important to understand the real risk of being hurt or killed in an accident. Studies have put the odds of being killed in a car crash at 1 in 98. If you’ve been hurt or a loved one has passed away, you need to know if you can seek compensation.

Source: Travel Tips, “Is Air Travel Safer Than Car Travel?,” Aurelio Locsin, accessed Dec. 09, 2016

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