Ladies & gentlemen please, please, fasten your seatbelts

Like everyone else who has anything to do with aviation I get asked: so what’s your hot safety tip?

People generally seem to want to know should you sit towards the rear, over the wing, near the exits – and so on. I tell them I have one tip above all else: stay strapped in.

I’m not sure the statistics exist to prove or disprove it, but my suspicion is that turbulence hurts more people in aircraft than any other single factor. The numbers that do get reported are pretty substantial and I reckon they’re the tip of the iceberg.

True most of the injuries are minor, but not all. Here’s a new NTSB report on a Southwest Airlines 737 incident that rams home the point. Those are very hefty positive and negative accelerations, and were enough to physically break two seatbelts (and yes, that is worrying in itself.)

Strap in!

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