space exploration - the red shirt always dies

Consider the risk: of the 483 people who have been launched into space as of March 2008, 18 have died during the mission. This mortality rate of 3.74% makes it one of the most dangerous professions one could follow: compare with a 0.39% mortality rate among the US military in Iraq 2003–2006 and 2.18% in Vietnam in 1966–1972, and you see that the risks are much greater for astronauts than they are even for combat troops.

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