Safety records and levels of service vary tremendously, from airline to airline. According to Skytrax, the best airlines in the world (with 5 star ratings) are as follows:
1.Asiana Airlines, 2.Cathay Pacific Airways, 3.Kingfisher Airlines, 4.Malaysia Airlines, 5.Qatar Airways, 6.Singapore Airlines.
The five stars ranking recognizes airlines at the forefront of product and service achievement according to Skytrax – airlines that generally set trends to be followed by other carriers.
Apart from these 5-star ratings, other airlines in the world are given ratings from zero stars to four stars, depending on a broad criteria. More than 800 different areas of product and service delivery for each airline are examined for both ground and onboard operations in deciding how the star ratings are awarded.
But what about the worst airlines in the world? What about airlines with the worst safety record in the world? For this we have to go to other sources of information.
Judging the worst airlines is much more difficult than judging the best ones. This is because some airlines in remote countries are difficult to compare with major airlines, given the number flights, the routes, the service, etc.
But when accident records are analysed, it is possible to produce a list of showing the worst airlines in the world. Here are the top ten worst airlines in terms of accident ratings, with the worst shown as number one:
1.Cubana Airline, accident rating 5.74. 2.China Airlines, accident rating 3.57. 3.Avianca Colombian Airline, accident rating 3.15 4.TAM Airline, accident rating 2.76. 5.Korean Air, accident rating 2.26. 6.Egypt Air, accident rating 2.06. 7.Indian Air Lines, accident rating 1.94. 8.Taesa Airlines, accident rating 1.83. 9.China Soutwest Airlines, accident rating 1.74. 10.Aeromexico, accident rating 1.55.
The above list was researched by ‘Airline Accident Ratings’ for the 20-year period from 1981 to 2000 (the latest data). The ratings are based on number of flights, number of fatal accidents, and the fatality rate of those accidents. Clearly, this information cannot and should not be used to provide an accurate assessment of an airline safety rating or future risk of an accident. Furthermore, the list does not endorse or condemn any particular airline, and a lot can change in the period 2000 – 2008.
However, it is clear that some airlines have a very poor safety record and it is only right to bring this to the attention of the public.
When examining safety records of airlines, one thing springs out: most causes of fatal airline accidents are due to pilot error. According to figures compiled over a fifty year period by ?Plane Crash Info?, pilot error accounts for 53% of all fatal airline accidents!
The figures for airline pilot error have on average remained pretty constant since the 1950’s, showing that modern technology is not leading to a reduction in the incidence of pilot error.