With lastest 737 Crash, 4000+ fatalities on model, Safe?

Well over 4000 fatalities have occured on 737s. While it is by far the number #1 plane flown in the World, and has been flying in one form or the other since 1967… I am starting to wonder about some of the latest incidents involved with even the newest models. There have been 8 losses of 737-800 alone with newest incident in India, including 90 fatalities Jan 25th near Beirut, and 9 fatalities in Amsterdam Feb 2009. (not sure what 737 model crashed days ago in Afganistan with 43 fatalities)

The Amsterdam crash seems troubling to me after reading the newly released final accident report.

While this crash, like many/most would not have happened lacking a combination of errors, and could easily have been prevented had just the crew followed basic procedure to go around when the aircraft was not stabilized at both 1000 and 500 feet,

The troubling part (and main cause of crash) is the malfunction of the “left radio altimeter system” that had a reading of -8 feet while descending through 1950 feet and caused the autothrottle system to enter the retard mode which eventually caused the plane to stall and crash to the ground from 460 feet.

The report states Boeing had known of this problem since at least 2004, yet had not provided proper procedures for pilots to take when the event happens. The report also states these malfunctions of the radio altimeter system happen much more often than even reported and in similar events could have been fatal but for the actions of crews. Just the one airline in this incident alone had many reports of this malfunction.

Now yet another runway is overrun by a 737 and 160 are killed. I have not looked into the many runway overrun incidents, but I know the 737 has been involved in a number of highly publicized ones in the recent past (including lost hull in Kingston Dec 22 2009)

Just curious what the most knowledgeable amongst you think

Not an observation that hasn’t been made before, but you also must realize it is the most common aircraft in existence. If you look under live tracking on this website, for aircraft by type, you will see the 737 usually has the most number of planes flying. Before judging an aircraft’s safety based on crash history, you have to look into each crash. What caused it? Was it some type of mechanical failure, engineering issue, etc? Or did human error come in to play?

Not to be the pot calling the kettle black, but the same questions would need to be asked of any Airbus crash, instead of it just being Airbus, Scarebus, FBW, or what have you.

You’re right, and I agree, but just for the Boeing fans, you have to treat any crash the same as what you’re mentioning above.


I’m just curious on the data from other aircraft, like the Boeing 747 or the Cessna 172.

You also need to put the fatalities in context.

4,000 killed. How many not killed? How many flights successfully completed? How many flights were the 4,000 killed on? How many of each model of the 737 are involved? There’s a big difference between a 737-200 and a 737NG.

The Concorde had 1 fatal crash. Yet it has one of the worse, if no the worse, safety record of any airliner. 10% of the fleet was destroyed by accident. Yet if you look at the bigger picture you’ll see that it was an extremely safe aircraft. Thousands of flights with thousands of passengers all flown safely. But, still, 10% of the airframes were destroyed.