Airline safety improved in 2014, despite a number of high-profile air disasters, according to a new report.
Last year marked the most accident-free year on record for commercial airliners with one accident for every 4.4 million flights, according to a new report by the International Air Transport Association (IATA). The number of accidental commercial airline fatalities increased to more than 600 in 2014.
The loss of two Malaysia Airlines flights was "extraordinary and tragic," the report said. Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 disappeared en route to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, in March with 239 people aboard and has yet to be found. Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 was shot down by anti-aircraft weaponry in Ukraine in July killing nearly 298 people. Flight 17's data was not included in the accident report because IATA does not classify the "act of aggression" as an accident.
There were no airline fatalities in the United States in 2014.
“To the flying public an air tragedy is an air tragedy, regardless of how it is classified," said Tony Tyler, IATA Director General and CEO. "The greatest tribute that we can pay to those who lost their lives in aviation-related tragedies is to continue our dedication to make flying ever safer."