ValuJet Crash Spur Safety Changes

"What I remember most about this accident is that it was unnecessary. This was completely preventable," said Goglia, a former NTSB member.


The aviation fatality rate is on track for a 73 percent reduction since those twin 1996 disasters, said Stuart Matthews, president and chief executive of the Flight Safety Foundation.

"From a commercial standpoint, aviation has never been safer," Matthews said.

In 1996, there were 342 deaths aboard regularly scheduled commercial passenger aircraft involved in accidents, a rate of one passenger fatality for every 1.9 million who boarded planes, according to the NTSB. By 2005, the number of fatalities had dropped to 20, or one for every 42 million passengers.

Many Valujet family members have sought to create something of their own to remember loved ones, from a basketball tournament in North Carolina that raised money to send poor kids to camp, to a Methodist church in Venezuela built in honor of one victim.

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On the Net:

National Transportation Safety Board: http://www.ntsb.gov

Federal Aviation Administration: http://www.faa.gov

National Air Disaster Alliance/Foundation: http://www.planesafe.org

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