Last year was one of the safest years on record for air travel, according to Ascend, with 539 reported passenger and crew fatalities, down from 730 in 2007 and the second-best year on record. The UK-based consultancy and information services provider said that only 2004 had fewer fatalities at 434. On the down side, 2008 saw an increase in the number of fatal accidents to 28 from 24 in 2007. Ascend said the fatal accident rate for 2008 was 1 per 1.3 million flights compared to 1 per 1.2 ...

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