SMBC Comic: This is Why People Should Learn Statistics [Pic]

[Source: SMBC]


10 Responses to SMBC Comic: This is Why People Should Learn Statistics [Pic]

  1. I've often argued this point, but it is somewhat difficult to find precise figures for statistical analysis. The point that I argue is this, using rough estimates I've seen online:

    Average amount of planes in U.S. airspace, annually:

    Average amount of cars on U.S. roadways, annually:

    Average number of plane crashes annually:

    Average number of car accidents annually:

    Average number of car accident fatalities annually:

    Assuming that each car fatality was a seperate incident (which is probably not the case) we would see a chance of .66% of a car accident fatality in a car accident. Annually, any given car would have roughly a .005% chance of being in an accident. So the chances of any given car producing a fatality on any given day is very, very small.

    It gets more complicated when dealing with airplanes, as they have larger person capacity, which may or may not be full, and on top of that any incident that happens off the ground is almost certainly going to end with a large number of fatalities. Couple that with the fact that some people will -not- fly, and some people do repeatedly daily, the risk to the "average" passenger becomes harder to figure.

    Anyway, just a rough guess here, but my thoughts on it are this: If you had the volume of car traffic that we do in the air, with pilots as skilled as drivers, air travel would be extremely more lethal. Simply due to volume and training it is "safer", statistically.

  2. Um, not only is she driving a car, she's texting while driving without a seat-belt. It was more than the usual car risk vs airplane risk.

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