Avoiding Unsafe Airlines

Posted June 5th, 2012 at 12:40 pm (UTC-5)
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The recent crash of an airliner in Nigeria heightened concern about passenger safety in Nigeria and some other developing nations. The head of the Flight Safety Foundation, Bill Voss, says Africa has a higher accident rate than other regions. The continent has just three percent of all airline traffic but a far larger share of the accidents.

Voss says passengers can avoid sub-par airlines by checking websites of international aviation organizations and some governments that monitor airline safety practices and keep an eye on the national aviation regulators.

He says the European Union puts some airlines with safety problems on a “black list” baring them from EU airspace. Voss also suggests checking the International Air Transport Association website, which shows airlines that have passed an audit called an “IOSA.” He says passing the audit is a “good sign” the carrier meets safety standards.

And Voss says the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration lists nations with strong oversight of airlines. Such nations get a “category one” rating on the FAA website.