What is the safest place on the plane?

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A Boeing 727 crashed under control in a desert in Mexico this summer. They participated over 400 people to this project. Millions of euros were spent and it took about 5 years project preparation. The crash and behavior of the dummies, during the impact, were filmed with 38 HD cameras mounted on the plane and on the plane.

For the first time for the airlines industry, images and information have been gathered that can contribute to safer aircraft and the establishment of new safety measures for passengers. Many tests are done in laboratories and do not even cover all the real situations possible. So the industry needs such experiments done with real airplanes.


Following this controlled crash, the first conclusions were drawn. A passenger plane lands at an average speed of 180 mph. In the case of the crashed plane, it had a speed of 450 mph. As a result of the impact, the cockpit and a little of the front of the plane broke off the rest of the fuselage. The first conclusions point to the front landing gear. He didn't get off the plane, which forced the muzzle to break.

Hibryd III Dummies, those used on board the aircraft, are 175 cm high and weigh 77 kg each. Hybrid III is regularly used to study the effects of frontal car collisions. Under these circumstances, male mannequins are often accompanied by mannequins that mimic women and children.

Each dummy has 32 of data channels. They were on board the aircraft 3 Dummy Hybrid III and there were 96 of data collection channels, at the rate of 10 000 of samples per second. The plane crash lasted about 450 milliseconds, so during this time, the mannequins collected 432 000 information.

This occasion also tested the position that a passenger must take in case of imminent impact. Airlines recommend the seat belt, slightly crouched forward position, head between arms and palms at the neck. So the researchers placed a dummy in the recommended position and one in the normal position.

In the case of the recommended position, the tibia of the foot was very requested due to the weight of the body and the force of impact. There are chances that some people will get injured in the ankle area and then they may have difficulty moving. In the case of the dummy sitting in the normal position the problems were in the lumbar area. In addition, he was struck head-on by the front seat and was hit on the shoulder by a panel detached from the plane.

The researchers recommend the crouching position, the one indicated and approved by the airlines industry, because the passenger is less vulnerable to accidents and has much more chances to escape safely.

Following the controlled crash, the impact forces were higher in the front - up to 12G and lower in the back - up to 6G. G is the force of gravitational attraction!

The summary conclusions and related to this accident show that the best places were those behind the plane. In case of accident with Boeing 727 "Big Flo", 81% of the passengers had a real chance of surviving. The first to suffer were the pilots, followed by the passengers from the business class and those on the front lines from the economy class.

I signed up the application created by Discovery Channel and I chose place 7C. After the show "Curiosity: The plane crashed“I received the following message:

"The 7C seat was no longer attached to the body of the aircraft, after the crash. The impact catapulted him 150 meters away from the plane, as the front of the fuselage dismantled and the plane was dragged directly to the ground. "

We must bear in mind that the Boeing 727 is no longer in use and has tail engines, and most of the operational aircraft currently have wing engines. So we are waiting for a test done with such aircraft!

Tip: When boarding airplanes, it is important to think positively and to trust your crews and aircraft. Always follow the instructions received from the on-board companions. I wish you the most enjoyable and incident-free flights!

PS There is no "safest place" on a plane because there are many factors that can influence an incident / accident. So I recommend you to choose the places you want, which you find comfortable etc!

  1. Radu Dumitrescu says


    Only one issue I related to the landing of the plane. How did the respective plane arrive at the 1.32 machine (the 450m / s with which it landed)? In the pictures in your other article, the plane seems to fly as horizontally as possible, but what I don't understand is how it came to land (forced) at supersonic speed. Or rather, how it got to fly at that speed - the sound speed is at 340m / s at low altitude.

    I'll document myself later in the evening, when I'll have some time. Looks interesting 🙂

  2. Sorin says

    Hi Radu,

    Yes, the information was taken from Discovery, but I think it's more plausible with the knots per hour. I will look to see the movie replay at a decent time: D.

    I'm researching the problem and I'm back with the exact information!

  3. Radu Dumitrescu says

    I think they would be knots, not knots / h. That is, knots represent speed, knots / h would be acceleration 🙂 450 of knots would be about cruise speed for an airplane (830km / h). I didn't find many technical details about this experiment, but I'm looking for more tonight.

  4. Claudiu says

    : )

    I always try to stay somewhere behind the wings, in a row from the window 🙂

    In the 29F place chances are that you have escaped without being injured or injured at the moment of impact. In fact, in the rear of the plane, the impact forces were only half as large as those on the front. At about 6G - that is, six times the force of gravitational attraction - you would have felt the impact like when you collide with the cars in an amusement park.

  5. stefan says

    many factors 🙂
    _ you want to see well on the window: in front
    _ you want to get a little less turbulent: on the wing
    _ you want to have some percentage more chances of not dying: in the back
    (although if you look at the crash in LA with that Korean plane a few years ago, this is not the case)

    PS: I will fly 2 or 380 soon, I took seats as far in front as possible, as large as the wings on the monster, it is better to stay fff in front or fff in back

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