How to avoid injury on an airplane

Airplane-related injuries can be avoided by staying out of turbulence, using seat belts, and limiting carry-on size and storage.

Many California residents willingly hop on a plane to travel for work and pleasure. While this type of travel may be considered safer than driving, injuries can still occur. According to the National Transportation Safety Board, there were 1,335 civil aviation accidents over the course of a single year. These accidents resulted in 408 deaths. Passengers and air carriers can do their part to ensure flights are as safe as possible.

Avoid turbulence when possible

Over the course of three years, turbulence caused 82 injuries to passengers and crew members on flights, states the Federal Aviation Administration. Because turbulence can cause extra hazards for those on board, the FAA and Commercial Aviation Safety Team created guidelines to help keep air travel safe. It is suggested that air carriers avoid large pockets of turbulence as often as possible. This safety precaution can be put into action by doing the following:

  • Using automated systems and weather models to reroute flight paths
  • Improving dispatcher training
  • Increasing real-time communications between pilots and dispatchers
  • Including turbulence in current weather briefings

Air transportation companies can implement these safety features to ensure everyone onboard airplanes stay out of harm's way. Avoiding turbulence reduces the unpredictable shaking of the planes.

Use the seat belts

Passengers can do their part to make their time on a plane a little safer too. Using seat belts while the airplane is in motion can help reduce the risk of injury. These safety devices can help keep people in their seats during rough patches. Parents should encourage their children to stay seated and buckled as often as possible. In fact, children under the age of two should be placed in FAA-approved car seats.

Consider carry-on items

Carry-on baggage can cause injuries if it falls out of the overhead bin or if it is too heavy for an attendant to lift. Before getting on a plane, passengers and crew members should do their best to ensure only the appropriate items are brought onto the plane. This could mean that attendants check bags that are too big for the smaller planes. It could also mean that passengers measure and weigh their suitcases before bringing them onto the plane.

Another important part of carry-on consideration should be how the items are stored during the flight. Securing the bags in the overhead bin, for example, can help reduce shifting. Staying out of the overhead bins while the plane is in motion ensures loose bags do not fall out on unsuspecting people.

Many people flying in and out of California may not consider the potential risks they have when getting on a plane. No matter how an injury takes place, it may be beneficial to work with a knowledgeable attorney.

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