Aircrash Bureau

One man´s horror is another man´s statistic.

The Aircraft crashes record office-website lists all commercial aircraft crashes since 1918 (photo documentation starts 1926).

First I was suprised by the existence of the site (must have been a momentary lack of cynicism), then I was taken back by the presentation which lists the latest crash, aircraft and casualties next to a rotating "new"-gif on top of the site. (They sadly added a second incident throughout the day! The site is obviously well maintained).

But then I found myself looking up accidents which I remembered for one reason or another. I found the terribly tragic crash of a 747 falling into a highrise in Amsterdam, which I read about on the frontpage of a newspaper while waiting for take-off in 1992.
I looked up the China Airlines Boing that overshot the runway on the old Hong Kong Kai-Tak airport, shortly before I was to land there for the first time in 1993. It was left lying there for some time, so that every passenger was allowed to witness the wreck from above.
I also had to look up the Aloha Airlines plane which lost parts of its roof in flight but managed to land with only a few casualties (a smalltalking Steward would later tell me that they called her "The convertible")

Yes, they are all there!

I asked myself why I was bothering to look up these terrible pictures in the first place. I am the last person to stare at car-crashes but when it comes to air-crashes: I can´t help to be fascinated and horrified.

The social and sexual philosophies of the ejector seat. The unfairness of the black box recorder. The microcosm of the airport and the entranced survivors who wander admidst the rubble, still wearing bathing suits.

Statisticats can even look up deathrates per operator and the worst accidents per year.

But the total rate of 16.874 crashes which claimed 120.017 lifes over 90 years, somehow seems tame if you compare it to the horrible devastation that is shown in the pictures and if you put it in perspective to the victims of the automobile.

The photos are taken from Aircraft crashes record office and I will remove them upon request.

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