They say Singapore Airlines (SIA) is a great way to fly. It is one of the safest ways too.
SIA has emerged as one of the world's top 20 safest carriers, with Australia's Qantas taking top spot for the third consecutive year in a ranking by AirlineRatings.com, an industry website that does various rankings, including that of service levels.
SIA's ranking is not known.
Except for Qantas, the other airlines in the top 20 were not given positions. Almost all of the other 18 airlines on the ranking by AirlineRatings.com operate flights to Singapore. They include Air New Zealand, All Nippon Airlines, Cathay Pacific, Emirates, Etihad Airways and Lufthansa.
The annual ranking, which started in 2013, also evaluated budget carriers. The top 10 included just two Asian airlines - Jetstar Australia and HK Express.
AirlineRatings.com said the top 20 full-service carriers including SIA "have always been at the forefront of safety innovation and launching of new aircraft".
It added that these airlines "have become a byword for excellence".
The rankings took into account several factors, including audits from aviation's governing bodies and lead associations as well as the airline's fatality record.
Each airline's operational history, incident records and operational excellence were also considered.
In all, 407 airlines were surveyed, with those from Indonesia, Nepal and Surinam in South America getting the lowest safety scores.
A spokesman for Qantas told The Straits Times: "This award belongs to the thousands of people at Qantas who make safety their No. 1 priority. It's also a reflection of the fact that everyone involved in aviation, from airlines to regulators and aircraft manufacturers, works to share learnings and make constant improvements to keep flying the safest way to travel."
For SIA, safety is a core value, said spokesman Nicholas Ionides. To promote safe practice and awareness among all staff, from engineers on the ground to pilots and cabin crew in the air, the airline has in place various training programmes and initiatives.
Despite several tragic incidents including the deliberate crash by a co-pilot of a Germanwings flight into the French Alps last March, the number of air accidents last year was actually below average. Last year's 16 air accidents and 560 fatalities were below the 10-year average of 31 accidents and 714 fatalities.
While flying has become safer, "the top priority for the industry is safety", said Mr Tony Tyler, director-general and chief executive of the International Air Transport Association, at a media gathering last month.
This article was first published on Jan 7, 2016.
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