While statistically, airplanes are the safest way of traveling, the chances of having an accident are likely to increase if an airplane is landing on one of the most dangerous airports in the world. How many times have we heard about these accidents? If there is anything really bad and dangerous, it’s an airplane crash. Most of these end up deadly and a very small percentage gets away with it without major consequences.
Now, although most of the accidents occur in the air, some happen at the very end or beginning of the trip. Dangerous airports are the biggest reason for it. We made a list of the most dangerous airports in the world that you should probably avoid if trying to travel safely!
9Narsarsuaq Airport, Greenland
Approaching the small airport of Narsarsuaq is a real adventure that not everyone likes to try unless they like putting themselves in danger. This airport is surrounded by plateaus and mountains, which makes it very hard to even spot. Additionally, the visibility is very poor and the terrain is everything but hospitable. In order to land, you have to cross the sea full of icebergs and fight polar winds that are not weak at all! If you are a real adventurist then you can try and land here. However, if safety is your concern, it is not recommended.
8Madeira Airport, Portugal
The Madeira International Airport (in Portuguese: Aeroporto da Madeira) is located on the island of the same name.
Today, the airport is equipped to receive Boeing 747 aircraft and almost any type of civil aircraft, being the main tourist gateway in the region, as well as postal services, urgent orders and other essential services. It is an international airport that also operates domestic flights.
Its track is also one of the most difficult and dangerous airplanes in the world when making approximations and landings, due to the high turbulence caused when the wind speed, which is higher than 15 knots. For all this, pilots need a special license to perform operations at this airport, and only pilots with experience in daytime operations can perform night operations. Not any pilot will dare to land here as there is a possibility of wind completely twisting the airplane or changing its direction. Airplanes are not very stable while landing so if this occurred close to the airport, it would be deadly.
7Congonhas Airport, Brazil
It is the second airport with the highest passenger traffic in Brazil. It is located on Washington Luís Avenue, in the center-south of the city of San Pablo. From 1936, when the airport was inaugurated, there have been two serious accidents. TAM company airplanes were really unfortunate as they both of these crashes occurred to them. Flight TAM 402 crashed on October 31, 1996, AND TAM 3054 in 2007 had fatal consequences. After leaving the runway, the airplane crashed into a building of the same airline and a fuel sales station. 199 people died right there and it is one more number showing that this place is one of the most dangerous airports in the world.
6The Toncontin International Airport, Honduras
The Toncontín International Airport is qualified for national and international flights and its track is 1863 m long. The runway was first used in 1920 and functioned like that for a long time. Back in 2006, the government remodeled without extending the length of the track. Considering the technology improvements and the airplanes themselves, that should have been the first thing to do.
How dangerous this airplane is, says the fact that two serious air crashes occurred here. The first happened in 1989, a Lockheed C-130H Hercules of the United States Air Force left the runway and crashed into the highway by burning and killing 7 people, while others 7 were injured. The second crash occurred on May 30, 2008, and five people died. Ever since then, people have been skeptical about it and they are not to blame. The runway is too short and only the experienced pilots dare to fly around this area.
5Gustaf III Airport – St. Bart
Gustaf III Airport, also known as Saint Barthelemy Airport or St. Jean Airport, is a civil airport located in the village of St. Jean on the Caribbean island of Saint Barthelemy. Both the airport and the capital of the island: Gustavia is named after King Gustav III of Sweden, under which Sweden conquered the island in possession of France in 1785 (it was sold to France in 1878).
The standard length of an international airport is 5,500 meters, St. Bart is only 650 m long. It is considered as one of the most dangerous airports in the world by many. Airplane crashes are not uncommon here. In 2013 an airplane crashed into the mountain while trying to land to St. Bart, which isn’t easy at all. This is a destination visited by many celebrities and wealthy people, many of them were in danger during this crash.
Gibraltar Airport is located on the isthmus between Gibraltar and Spain and is the only one in the world with an airstrip crossing an avenue where cars, taxis, and buses circulate.
It was built during World War II and opened in 1949. This airport served only as an emergency base for the British Army at first. On December 2, 1987, Spanish and British governments agreed to the civilian use of the facility. However, it was not put into practice before the opposition of the Gibraltar authorities.
The fact that in order to get to this airport, airplanes need to fly closely over the other vehicles is scary itself. Most of the airplane crashes occur over the sea so people inside are the only ones that end up being hurt. However, if an airplane crashes on the way to this airport, random vehicles on the avenue would be destroyed. That way, the passengers and people driving close to the airport are in danger every time an airplane is coming close.
3Juancho E. Yrausquin International Airport
Juancho E. Yrausquin Airport is the only airport on the island of Saba, which is located in the Caribbean. It is considered as the shortest commercially useful track in the world, with 396 meters.
Saba is a small island of 13 km ² with the status of the overseas territory or of the special integral municipality of the Netherlands, and it forms part of the countries and territories overseas of the European Union. Although the airport is officially marked as closed to traffic, regional propeller aircraft are able to land at this airport. The reason why it closed in the first place was its location and structure that were very scary and unsafe. Being located on the island, the odds are that an airplane could crash in the sea even before landing. However, if an accident occurred once it hit the runway, the sea around could only contribute to the fatal consequences that would appear.
2Princess Juliana, St Maarten
Princess Juliana International Airport is located on St Maarten Island. It is the third most heavily loaded airport in the Caribbean. This airport belongs to the Kingdom of the Netherlands, on the south side of the Caribbean island. The most dangerous part about this airport is the closeness to the coast.
The local government warns that getting too close at the time of arrival and departure of aircraft “can lead to serious injury or even death”. It means that people can get sucked by a turbine or sent to the sea. This airport is one of the only places in the world where you can see the planes in their takeoff or landing just below it. We can conclude that it is not only dangerous for the passengers. It is dangerous for the people around the whole area! It certainly is one of the most dangerous airports in the world. Not only you should be afraid while landing but even when you are not in the plane but close to it! The only way not to be affected is to stay away from it completely. It is the second on the list of the most dangerous airports in the world.
The small airport of Courchevel in the French Alps is the only air access for one of the largest ski areas in the world. However, its track is only 525 meters long and 40 wide, undulating and sloping, located at 2000 meters high. For that reason, it is also on the top of the most dangerous airports in the world.
The most daring pilots of small private planes and helicopters are the only one who actually manages to take off from here. One of them is Pierce Brosnan, featuring James Bond of “Tomorrow never dies”. That being said, unless you are James Bond, you probably shouldn’t head off to this airport. Safety comes before anything and this runway is not safe at all.
List Of Most Dangerous Airports In The World
- Courchevel Airport
- Princess Juliana, St Maarten
- Juancho E. Yrausquin International Airport
- Gibraltar Airport
- Gustaf III Airport – St. Bart
- The Toncontin International Airport, Honduras
- Congonhas Airport, Brazil
- Madeira Airport, Portugal
- Narsarsuaq Airport, Greenland