10 Worst Ways to Die

Plane Crash
This Turkish Airlines Boeing 737-800 plane, which broke into three pieces when it landed short of the runway at the Netherlands' Schiphol Airport on Feb. 25, 2009, killed four crew member and five passengers. Three additional crew members and another 117 passengers were injured. Paul Vreeker/Getty Images

Call it a copout, but there's something to be said for the utter misery of dying in a plane crash. Like a lot of our Worst Ways to Die, it's not necessarily the death part that's going to be so awful. It's the utter inevitability that accompanies the long moments before it all ends.

Let's just get the awful facts straight, so you know what you're dealing with when the plane starts to go down. First of all, you're probably about 6 miles (31,680 feet or 9,656 meters) in the sky. If you're in a real free fall, hypoxia might set in and you'll be unconscious for roughly the first mile of the fall because of lack of oxygen.

But then you'll wake up -- hooray? -- to discover you're still plunging 120 miles per hour (193 kilometers per hour), and still have a full two or three minutes to go from about a 30,000 foot cruising altitude to the very hard and unforgiving ground.

Maybe the worst part of a plane crash is that it's a common fear, as well. Let's be honest; the worst way to die is a deeply personal choice. If you fear air travel, your imagination soars about sputtering engines, clipped wings and the like. If you fear snakes. ... well, read on.