Mass transportation has come a long way since the days of the horse and buggy. There are now more choices than ever for travelers looking to get from point A-to-B — from majestic double-decker commercial airliners, to the humble electric scooter. Even on-demand ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft offer people who may not own any vehicle relatively easy access to quick transit.
Advances in technology have also made transportation safer. Most modern passenger cars and trucks are equipped with active safety features like automatic emergency braking, blind-spot monitors, parking sensors, and intelligent cruise control. Combined with passive safety features like airbags, these are all designed to help prevent crashes, or reduce the likelihood of injury in a collision.
But despite that progress, your chances of dying while traveling in some type of vehicle is a nonzero probability. Moreso in some forms of transit than in others.
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Using historic and publicly available data from several US federal agencies, including the Bureau of Transportation Statistics and the National Safety Council, we list the number of deaths that have occurred in various forms of transit in rrecent years.
According to 2017 and 2018 data from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, the National Safety Council, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, and the Governor’s Highway Safety Association, the most-recent data available from the agencies, there were 37,133 highway deaths, 831 railroad deaths, and 658 people who died in recreational boating incidents. Zero passengers died on US air carriers that year.
There were zero passenger deaths on US air carriers in 2017, while in 2018, the number of pedestrian deaths reached a nearly three-decade high. Read on to see what else we found.