Acrophobia is the fear of heights. While this fear can be very real to some people, others simply just have the fear of falling, which is referred to as basophobia. Obviously the two are closely linked. When combined with sky activities, this fear can be even more real.
What most people probably do not think about is that – statistically speaking – skydiving is relatively safe. There is always the possibility that something could go wrong, but realistically, you are more likely to die on the car ride to the plane than on the actual jump itself.
The United States Parachute Association reported in 2015 there were 21 deaths out of 3.5 million jumps. This calculates to .0061 deaths in every thousand people. Skydiving is over seven times safer than is was in the 1960s and with advances in the sport it becomes safer every year.
Here are five things that are more dangerous than skydiving:
1.) Heart disease. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 610,000 people die of heart disease every year. This accounts for approximately 25% of the death total. It is the leading cause of death for both men and women.
2.) Bees, wasps, and hornets. On average bees, wasps, and hornets kill around 58 people per year. This is over twice as many deaths as from skydiving.
3.) Lightning. Everybody has heard that you are more likely to be struck by lightning than killed by a shark. The same is inevitably true for skydiving. You are more likely to die being struck by lightning than from skydiving. In the last twenty years, on average 51 people have died from being struck by lightning each year.
4.) Automobiles. As stated before, there is a far higher chance of dying in a car crash than from skydiving. In 2015, there were 35,092 deaths due to car accidents. This is 11.324 deaths out of every 100,000 people. This compares to .61 deaths per 100,000 people due to skydiving. This means you are 18.26 times more likely to die on the road than from skydiving. Put this into perspective when you are thinking about your next jump.
5.) Dogs. That is right. Your friendly, adorable, canines kill more people than skydiving does. According to an article in The Washington Post, each year around 28 people die due to attacks from man’s best friend. Think about this next time if you are up in the air about thinking about being up in the air skydiving.
Regardless of your fears—keep this in mind the next time you think about taking a plunge from the sky. It really is not as dangerous as simple, everyday activities or things or animals you are exposed to on a daily basis. Safety is the number one priority at almost every place you go. The Federal Aviation Administration has tight regulations controlling almost every aspect of the sport. Certified skydivers strap you in on your first dive and you are literally attached at four places to them.