Ever since air travel was made available to civilians, many people have been apprehensive of flying. This often stems from a fear that the airplane will fail and crash to the ground. Although the risk of dying in an airplane crash is very low, there have been numerous instances where planes have crashed and taken many lives, and these instances fuel this fear. It is of the utmost importance for airplanes to go through routine maintenance and check-ups using the latest technologies to ensure all systems are running smoothly.
This is a list of the top ten deadliest airplane crashes in history.
🚀 10. Helios Airways Flight 522
The first entry on this list consists of a very unusual occurrence that related to an airplane crash. Helios Airways Flight 522 was travelling to Athens, and because the auto-pressurization feature was not turned on, the cabin was slowly depressurizing. As a result, the captain, the pilot, and all the passengers lost consciousness.
The plane kept flying on auto-pilot, and only one flight attendant was able to remain conscious, due to an oxygen tank. Unfortunately, he could not save the plane from crashing, and all 121 people on board died when the plane crashed into Gramatiko Hill.
🚀 9. Pan Am Flight 103
On December 21, 1988, Pan Am Flight 103 was on its way from Frankfurt to Detroit when it exploded in mid-air and fell to the ground in Scotland. All 259 people aboard were instantly killed by the planted bomb, and another 11 were killed when the plane crashed to the ground.
🚀 8. American Airlines Flight 191
The accident of American Airlines Flight 191 is one that seemingly could have been prevented. During takeoff, there was damage to one of the wings, but the crew continued with takeoff. Due to the damage and the resulting engine separation, the crew could not control the plane, and it crashed shortly afterward, killing all 271 onboard and two additional people on the ground.
🚀 7. Iran Air Flight 655
In an event that brought a lot of criticism on the United States military, Iran Air Flight 655 was shot down by a United States naval vessel. Even though the airplane was identified as a civilian aircraft, the USS Vincennes shot it down with a surface to air missile and killed all 290 people onboard.
🚀 6. Air India Flight 182
Air India Flight 182 was on its way from Toronto to London on June 23, 1985 when it exploded from a bomb over the coast of Ireland. The bomb was planted in baggage of passengers who never boarded the plane, and when detonated, instantly killed 329 people. Prior to 9/11, it was the largest terrorist attack involving a plane in world history.
🚀 5. Turkish Airlines Flight 981
Due to an improperly closed cargo door, Turkish Airlines Flight 981 crashed and killed 345 onboard passengers and crew. With the door slightly ajar, there was an explosion as they reached higher altitude, and all flight controls were disconnected. The plane crashed shortly after in a forest, and almost completely disintegrated.
🚀 4. Saudi Arabian Airlines Boeing 747 and Kazakhstan Airlines Illyushin II-76
The most devastating in-air crash between two aircraft happened on November 12, 1996, over the village of Charkhi Dadri in India. The two airplanes collided, with the tail of the Kazakhstan airplane cutting through the wing of the Saudi airplane, causing both airplanes to crash. All 312 people aboard the Boeing and all 37 people aboard the Illyushin died as a result.
🚀 3. Japan Airlines Flight 123
On August 12, 1985, Flight 123 from Japan Airlines was on its way to Osaka International Airport. Twelve minutes into the flight, there was an explosion caused by improper repair on its rear bulkhead. A large portion of the tail was ripped off and the pilot lost control of the plane. It crashed into a mountain and 524 lives were lost.
🚀 2. Boeing 747s at Tenerife Airport
This entry consists of a crash that happened prior to any plane taking off. Due to some unfortunate miscommunication and some heavy fog, two Boeing B747s crashed into each other on the runway of the Tenerife Airport. The crash took the lives of 538 people, making it the highest fatality rate of all accidental airline crashes.
🚀 1. World Trade Center airline crashes
The World Trade Center attacks are by far the most deadly and awful disasters caused by airplanes. Not only were there no survivors from the passengers on the two planes that crashed into the towers, thousands more were killed by the subsequent fall of the towers. With a total of 2753 victims, this was truly the most tragic of all airline crashes.