Don't be freaked out by that eerie video of a Russian airliner skidding off an icy runway. Last year will go down as the safest year for airline travel since the dawn of the jet age more than 50 years ago.
According to data from the Aviation Safety Network, an independent organization based in the Netherlands, there were 23 fatal airliner accidents in 2012, well below the average in recent years.
In terms of the total number of accidents for airliners, last year was the lowest since the end of World War II. The 23 accidents include air cargo aircraft, an airplane used to transport sky divers and a demonstration airplane from Russia. There were just 11 fatal accidents involving airliners, again the lowest number since 1945. The 10-year average for total airliner crashes is 34, and for passenger carrying aircraft, the average is 16.
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