Re: Fear of Flying

Date:         12 Dec 96 03:49:24 
From:         m@ml.com (M Carling)
Organization: Merrill Lynch
References:   1
Followups:    1 2
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waleed@flip.eecs.umich.edu (Waleed M. Meleis) wrote:
>Hi, I have a friend who is afraid of flying who asks the following question.
>If, for some reason, all the engines on a large plane (such as a 747) were
>to stop in the middle of a long flight across the US, what would happen?
>In particular, we would like to know:
>
>- How long could the plane glide along?
>- Would it be able to make it to the ground without crashing?
>- Would it, generally, be able to make it to an airport?
>
>Feel free to make any reasonable assumptions.  Thanks very much.

The probability of one engine failing in mid-flight on a 747 is less than 1
in 1000. Since the sources of multiple engine failure (aside from running out
of fuel) generally occur at low altitudes, the probabilty of all four engines
failing in mid-flight on a 747 is probably lower than one in
1,000,000,000,000. Your friend is more likely to be hit by a meteor.

M Carling