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Airlines

The Only Airlines With No Fatal Crashes on Record

The Only Airlines With No Fatal Crashes on Record
Taylor Rains

Without a doubt, flying is the safest mode of transportation. Although many airline crashes have happened in the over 100-year history of the industry, the likelihood of a plane going down today is about 1 in 5.4 million, although many experts say it is even slimmer odds than that. As a matter of fact, there are quite a few carriers across the globe that have never suffered a fatal accident in the jet era. Scroll down for a list of well-known airlines with no passenger fatalities.

Network Carriers

Although these major, international carriers have never suffered a passenger fatality, some have come close, experiencing substantial aircraft damage or causing serious injury.

Qantas

Named the world’s safest airline of 2020, Qantas has a squeaky clean accident record. Although it is true that the airline suffered 12 fatal accidents before 1951 while operating biplanes and floatplanes, as well as operating on behalf of the military during World War II, the airline has never crashed a jet airliner.

Hawaiian Airlines

Operating since 1929, Hawaiian Airlines is the longest living airline never to suffer a single accident. It is also the oldest in the United States to maintain a perfect safety record. Although it has declared bankruptcy twice (1993 and 2003), safety was never compromised, and the airline continues to operate aircraft safely to the Asian Pacific, Hawaii, and along the U.S. West Coast. Hawaiian also made the top 20 list of the world’s safest airlines according to AirlineRatings.com.

Virgin Atlantic, Australia, and America

Virgin branded airlines have been crash-free for their entire 30-year history. Virgin Atlantic began operations in 1984 and serves 33 countries, Virgin Australia started in 2000 and serves 52 countries, while Virgin America was born in 2007, but has since merged with Alaska Airlines. Although the brand has never suffered a fatal accident, Virgin Atlantic has had two incidents that resulted in aircraft damage.

EVA Air

The Taipei-based airline was born in 1989 and has one of the best safety records of any Asian carrier, having never suffered a fatal accident or any hull loss. The airline was recently ranked in the top safest airlines in the world and is a 5-star carrier according to SkyTrax.

Middle-East Big Three: Emirates, Etihad, and Qatar

The three major Middle-Eastern carriers rank in the world’s top safest airlines, and none have lost a passenger or crew member in an accident. However, there have been close calls, including an Emirates B777 that crash-landed at Dubai International, causing substantial aircraft damage. Qatar has also experienced two fire-related aircraft damage events, and Etihad suffered aircraft damage during a ground test and injured nine people.

Low-Cost Carriers

Low-cost carriers have a much younger history than some of the network carriers listed above, but their safety records are still impressive.

United States: Spirit, Frontier, Allegiant, and Sun Country

The main U.S. low-cost carriers are Spirit, Frontier, Allegiant, and Sun Country – all of which has never suffered a fatal accident. Although Spirit has had a few inflight maintenance issues over the years, while Allegiant battled reports of unsafe aircraft, the airlines continue to safely fly millions of passengers and expand their network year over year.

Europe: Ryanair and EasyJet

Ryanair is the largest low-cost carrier in Europe and has flown millions of passengers accident-free for 35 years. The only major incident was in 2008 when a flight had to return to Rome after experiencing multiple bird strikes, causing damage to the engines, nose, wings, and landing gear. Only a few passengers suffered minor injuries, but the plane was damaged beyond repair.

EasyJet has not had any fatal accidents and doesn’t have any significant incidents to report.

Regional Airlines

Regional airlines operate on behalf of mainline carriers and serve cities with insufficient demand needed for the major carriers. Although the pilots flying these routes typically have less experience than bigger airlines, there are still quite a few that have had zero fatalities.

  • Aeromexico Connect (Aeromexico)
  • Air Do (All Nippon Airways)
  • CommutAir (United Express)
  • Compass Airlines (Delta Connection)
  • Endeavor Airlines (Delta Connection)
  • ExpressJet Airlines (United Express)
  • GoJet (Delta Connection and United Express)
  • Japan TransOcean Air (Japan Airlines)
  • Jazz (Air Canada Express)
  • Mesa Airlines (United Express)
  • Portugalia Airlines (TAP Express)
  • PSA Airlines (American Eagle)
  • Republic Airways (American Eagle, Delta Connection, and United Express)
  • Sky Regional Airlines (Air Canada Express)
  • Trans State Airlines (United Express)

Other Accident-Free Airlines

There are dozens of other airlines that have maintained an excellent safety record. According to AirSafe.com, these carriers have had zero passenger fatalities since 1970:

The United States and Canada

  • Air Transat
  • Canadian North
  • Cape Air
  • JetBlue Airways
  • Omni Air International
  • Porter Airlines
  • Silver Airways
  • Trans States Airlines
  • WestJet Airlines

Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Azul Brazilian Airlines
  • Bahamasair
  • Caribbean Airlines
  • Cayman Airways
  • Interjet
  • LASER
  • Sky Airline
  • VivaAerobus
  • Viva Air Colombia
  • Volaris

Europe

  • Aer Lingus
  • Aegean Airlines
  • Air Austral
  • AirBaltic
  • Air Dolomiti
  • Air Malta
  • Austrian Airlines
  • Azores Airlines
  • Blue Panorama
  • Brussels Airlines
  • Corsair
  • Edelweiss Air
  • Eurowings
  • Finnair
  • Icelandair
  • Norwegian Air Shuttle
  • Nouvelair Tunisie
  • Novair
  • Onur Air
  • Pegasus Airlines
  • Smartwings
  • Sunexpress Airlines
  • Transavia Airlines
  • Vueling
  • Wizz Air

Africa and the Middle East

  • Air Astana
  • Air Mauritius
  • Air Seychelles
  • Air Tanzania
  • Arkia Israeli Airlines
  • Jazeera Airways
  • Kulala
  • Mahan Air
  • Oman Air
  • South African Express
  • Syrian Air
  • Tunisair
  • Turkmenistan Airlines

Asia and the Pacific Regions

  • Air Macau
  • Cathay Dragon
  • Hainan Airlines
  • IndiGo
  • Jetstar
  • Juneyao Airlines
  • Royal Brunei Airlines
  • Shandong Airlines
  • Shanghai Airlines
  • Shenzhen Airlines
  • Sichuan Airlines
  • Skymark Airlines
  • SpiceJet
  • Tigerair
  • VietJet

It is important to note that the lists above highlight the record of passenger fatalities—they are not lists of safest airlines—so although some carriers did not make the “accident-free list,” such as Japan Airlines, Korean Air, Delta, and British Airways, they are still reputable airlines with high safety standards.

View Comments (11)

11 Comments

  1. AJNEDC

    January 28, 2020 at 10:40 am

    Has Virgin Atlantic Airways ever had a crash or an accident. I believe it has never. So shouldn’t it be on this list?

  2. A321neo

    January 28, 2020 at 3:41 pm

    @AJNEDC
    Virgin Atlantic is on this list. It’s there along with Virgin Australia and Virgin America.

    To the AUTHOR:
    This statement is wrong: “Virgin Atlantic began operations in 1984 and serves 33 countries, Virgin Australia started in 2000 and serves 52 countries”. These airlines absolutely do not serve that many countries. Heck, even the largest airlines don’t serve 52 countries… Maybe you meant number of cities (even that, seems a bit high).

  3. Dr.Ells

    January 28, 2020 at 11:31 pm

    Well…. since FlyerTalk has published several similar and more thoroughly researched articles on this topic in the past, they should have passed on this fatal crash.

  4. fartoomanyusers

    January 29, 2020 at 8:42 am

    Emirates may not have experienced any passenger deaths, but in the B777 crash you mention an airport firefighter died during the rescue operation. So I’m pretty sure that counts as a fatal accident.

  5. baggins

    January 29, 2020 at 10:41 am

    Technically speaqking, SWA has had no fatal crashes, but of course has one well-publicized fatality.

  6. pgary

    January 29, 2020 at 12:35 pm

    Didn’t Hawaiian lose a door with a passenger blown out many years ago?

  7. A321neo

    January 29, 2020 at 7:35 pm

    @pgary — no, that was southwest who had the passenger blown out.

  8. ulxima

    January 30, 2020 at 10:27 pm

    @pgary
    That was Aloha 423 flight in 1988, a flight attendant was blown out and her body never recovered.

  9. tracon

    January 31, 2020 at 4:53 am

    Qantas has wrecked jetliners.
    QF1 in BKK Sept. 23, 1999 and
    QF32 in SIN Nov. 4, 2010.

    My understanding is no insurance claims were filed, hence the “squeaky clean accident record.”

  10. Meneer Guggenheimer

    January 31, 2020 at 8:55 am

    Air Tanzania can not have accidents because most of the times the flights are not operated…

    I skidded of the runway with a Ryanair 737 in there very early years in Charleroi Belgium. No fatalities or injured but that plane did not fly again…

  11. L4ibsch

    February 11, 2020 at 5:15 am

    Pegasus one of the safest airlines? You’re not reading the recent news. They are regularly overshooting the runway and people HAVE died on their planes.

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