Beleaguered Qantas CEO Alan Joyce tried – and failed – to soothe the collective minds of travellers worldwide when he announced at a Senate inquiry in Canberra yesterday that somewhere in the world a Qantas group plane takes off every second and there’s only a “technical problem” every four minutes.
Awesome! That completely makes us feel better. That’s one in every 240 Qantas planes having some type of small glitch, fault or malfunction. Small as these “technical problems” may be he just scared the living shit out of anyone looking to jet overseas or interstate anytime soon.
Those afraid of flying could once sit back and rest easy with reassurances such as:
“You’re less likely to die in a plane crash than a car crash and I’m in cars all the time”
“Even though Qantas has had a tough time lately they’ve never lost a life in a crash so my chances of dying are pretty slim and at least i’ll be accorded some kind of fame if it did happen”
“This turbulence is pretty bad but what are the odds that the plane could actually have a technical problems, like one in 10,000 – right?”
So back to the 1 in 240 odds. Who’s running the corporate communications at Qantas? Who briefed Alan Joyce before he stepped into the parliamentary inquiry.
We’re no experts in public relations management but why not focus on the fact that in 90 years they’ve never had a fatality (which is pretty amazing considering that a plane does take off EVERY second). Or the fact that during recent “technical problems” it was actually the training and the skills of the Qantas pilots that ensured the plane landed safely and didn’t end up in anything worse than another round of bad press.
Joyce blamed “The press interest and the press scrutiny” for the recent attention to Qantas’ safety practices and ensured the inquiry that Qantas would never put costs above safety with $1.4 billion being spent each year on maintenance.
Because at heart we’re a pop-culture website and because a couple of us in the office actually have to catch flights this week we thought we’d try and erase the 1 in 240 odds from our minds the best way we know how – which is through song.
To start, here’s ‘Leaving on a Jet Plane’, by John Denver, who incidentally ended his life by crashing his own plane into the Pacific Ocean.
For the R&B cure, there’s Aaliyah’s ‘Try Again’. She also died in a plane crash, but hey ‘Try Again’ could be a great motto for Qantas in 2011.
And given the recent Qantas exploding fuselage debacle, we can’t go past Buddy Holly (guess how he died?)’s ‘Rip It Up’…
At least we can rest easy knowing that our chance of fatally slipping or falling in the shower/bath is 1 in 2,232