The plane that went down into the Hudson river this afternoon was made by European aircraft maker Airbus. Despite its popularity and a reputaiton for reliability, the A320 model has been involved in at least nine accidents since it was introduced 20-one years ago.
When it first debuted, the A320 model was controversial. Critics charged that the plane was too complicated and dangerous to fly. So strong were the criticisms that Airbus was forced to make adjustments to the design and airlines retrained pilots. Now, despite the crash record, it is widely regarded a “good bird” with a good safety record.
The small planes are very popular in Asia and Latin America, and tend to be used for short- and medium-haul flights. With a total of 3,000 delivered by Airbus, the A320 is second best selling model of planes ever, after Boeing’s 737.