Tag Archives: accident

99% Success is rubbish

‘99% success rate!’

Sounds great, doesn’t it?

You’d probably buy something that has that promise. It sounds really good!

Put into real life though, it’s pretty crap.

A car has around 30,000 parts.

If each part was only 99% good, then you are looking at 900 parts failing out of those 30,000 parts.

Put it another way…

A large airliner, such as an A380 Airbus has around 3 million parts.

That 99% good is terrible as it allows 30,000 parts to fail.

That’s every part of a car failing. Not just a switch, but the spring, washer, fulcrum, each electrical connector, the plastic button itself, the bulb, every part of that switch would fail.

Literally everything on the car failing. Each wheel nut, every tyre, every single component on the stereo, even the cup holder and each section of upholstery… A bit like a British car from the 1970’s.

Would you feel okay flying in an aircraft that boasts it’s parts are 99% fail free? ‘Only 30,000 parts likely to fail!!!’

Even 99.9% fail free still allows for 3,000 parts going wrong in that aircraft. Still not great.

500,000 open heart surgeries are carried out a year. That’s not all heart operations – that’s just full cut open and hands in wet work. 99% success would accept 5000 of those to die.

International air transport saw 3 billion people flying around this year. Just standard passenger flights – not including any other flights.

3,000,000,000 people a year. If 99% of those people survived their flights, that would accept 30 million deaths per year… 99.9% survival would accept just 3 million deaths a year, so that’s okay…?

2014 has been a terrible year in civil aviation. Due to several airliner losses (including shoot downs/missing), 761 lives were lost. Usually this number is much lower. In 2013 it was just 265 lives lost out of around 3,000,000,000 that flew commercially.

That’s more than 99.99999% surviving their flights – and we’re still driving that number
down because even one loss is not acceptable.

That’s why automotive, aviation and medicine etc. work to much, much higher quality standards than a terrible low target of just 99%.


Red Arrows Crash (bang, what a story)

I can’t stand watching the news when there has been an air accident.

Being brought up with air accidents made me hate the news reports on them as they all spout utter rubbish and speculations whilst the damned wreckage is still smouldering and the pilot has yet to be found.

Take in case the accident at Bournemouth Air Festival today  . Within minutes of it happening the TV news were all over it…

Not even 5 minutes after it had happened and…

  • The pilot can’t be found.
  • The pilot was killed.
  • The pilot was pulled out of the river after ejecting.
  • The aircraft were doing a display.
  • The display had finished.
  • The aircraft were landing.
  • The Red Arrow had power problems & dived into the ground.
  • There was an explosion & fire (my favourite –  Most false witnesses see explosions & fire… even if it’s a glider crash or failed parachute display…).
  • One news reporter actually fed the ‘witness’ lines during the interview (Sky).

RAF Red Arrows

I have the greatest respect for the crews, families and all directly involved. It’s a dangerous job, things can go wrong and yet they still do it. My hat is off to you and the rest of our armed services.

As for witnesses… they are near useless.

A witness (or even a group of witnesses) can go on for 20 minutes about an event that happened in a split second. You can’t take in and process all of that data that your eyes just saw, so your brain fills in the blanks with possible scenarios. If a witness adds anything to a scene it is usually confusion and speculation.

My dad put more faith in examining a hangar full of wreckage to find the cause, than he ever did a witness. So ‘witnesses’ and ‘News reporters’,  just shut up & let the investigators do their jobs. They are trained to do it and funnily enough, they know more about it than you…

If you do want to run around like headless chickens, then I suggest you go HERE for that particular information.

UPDATE:

The Ministry of Defence has confirmed that the Red Arrows pilot killed on Saturday afternoon was Flight Lieutenant Jon Egging. He was 33. My sympathies to his family and friends.

This from the MOD Red Arrows site:


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