'Am I Going Down?' App Targets Nervous Flyers

Open Jaw

If you're flying on a Boeing 777 CX flight from HKG to LAX on any given day, there's a one in 4,068,434 chance that your plane will crash.

That’s according to a new iPhone app called ‘Am I Going Down?’

Doing the math, that means if you were to take that flight every day for the next 11,146 years, you'll be unlikely to experience an incident. If you are a nervous flier, would that make you feel better? The app’s developers think so.

CNN reports that the new app, created by U.K. based Vanilla Pixel, uses real flight statistics to analyze flight safety. Developer Nic Johns says it's geared toward those who are uneasy about air travel. "The initial inspiration comes from my co-founder and wife, Julie, who for many years has suffered from a fear of flying," says Johns. "In developing 'Am I Going Down?' I wanted to present the fact that the vast majority of flights are incredibly low risk. Our app is meant as a tool to help reassure fearful fliers."

Johns says more than 10 million routes have been assessed using data from sources such as the Geneva-based Bureau of Aircraft Accidents Archives, the United States National Transportation Safety Board and the Montreal-based International International Civil Aviation Organization.

"For my analysis I only include crashes where there was at least 1 passenger fatality - which is the relevant stat for those with a fear of flying," says Johns. "I then incorporate the volume of flights, weighted to the most recent 10 years, to provide the final '1 in a million' statistics."

The timing of the app’s release was awkward, given that it came out just days after QZ8501 went down. The developer says it was an unfortunate coincidence.

"I actually developed the app in February 2014, shortly before the Malaysia Airlines MH370 disappearance," says Johns. "Due to that I postponed the release and worked on a few other things, then finalized and submitted it to Apple in December. The AirAsia QZ8501 flight crashed 2 weeks later.”

The app, now available in iTunes, costs $0.99.

"The positive response from anxious fliers has been amazing, really encouraging," says Johns.

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