Well, I'm finally ready to start my PHD project for Temporal Starfleet Academy, and my mentor has suggested "observing" as a crew member on the Enterprise! Or the Enterprise (D)...or the Enterprise (NX)! Also, DS9, Voyager...hmmm, it seems weird that it's only those 5 ships (and also suspicious it's during some very trying years for them). Seeing as I have to only "observe" and not change the path of history, I'm going to have to take a job as a standard crewman, but I'd also like to not die.

Serving on which titular ship from the Star Trek series is most likely to get me killed?

Fourth Wall Breakage: This question popped into my head as I was watching Enterprise and noticed halfway through season 2 that nobody died. Maybe one or two people did (I didn't pay attention very well), but that's actually a really good survival rate given that they got into a lot of firefights with very low technology.

Which ships have the worst and best survival rates for crew over their seasons? Any episodes that "didn't happen" (like VOY's "Year Of Hell") don't count in the final factoring, as if I were to "die" in those episodes, I'd be back by the next.

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    It is almost certainly the NX or Voyager since the other series has many random red shirts. On a separate note however it is almost certain your research proposal will be denied, your mere presence as a crew member would alter events in unpredictable ways the only individuals who would serve as crew-member's would be temporal agents sent for sanctioned missions not research personnel
    – revenant
    Jun 27, 2017 at 7:23
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    @revenant I wouldn't be too certain about that. I remember a conversation from season 3 of Enterprise where Malcolm Reed laments that the ship's casualty rate has exceeded 20% thanks to the Xindi. Jun 27, 2017 at 7:44
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    I agree with Revenant, you simply can't be aboard one of the ships physically. Perhaps you could make a deal with Q and get temporary Q powers so as to observe them without interfering :P Jun 27, 2017 at 8:34
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    “I'd also like to not die” — typical millennial snowflake Oct 25, 2022 at 0:18

1 Answer 1


There were 57 recorded deaths aboard Kirk’s Enterprise out of a complement of 430 over the three years of TOS, giving a survival rate of 95.6% per year.

There were 61 recorded deaths aboard Picard’s Enterprise out of a complement of 1,014 over the seven years of TNG, giving a survival rate of 99.1% per year.

The others are more difficult to calculate, as Memory Alpha’s casualty lists appear incomplete or are otherwise difficult to parse. Here’s my best effort:

DS9 is the hardest to calculate because it's the only show that's spread across multiple "main" spacecraft (the titular station itself, the Defiant, the runabouts). Additionally, the station goes through massive changes in demographic structure during the course of the show, including the prolonged evacuation of about half the cast when it was under Dominion occupation. Given the show's generally darker and more military tone (being the only example in classic trek of a full-on war being a major multi-season plot thread), I'm confident that DS9 overall has the lowest survival rate out of the five series. But I haven't been able to come up with a good way to prove this using numbers, so I'm excluding it from consideration for the time being.

Voyager began its mission with a complement of 153, “over a dozen” of which perished when the ship was brought to the Delta Quadrant. With the addition of Neelix, Kes, and 23 Maquis from Chakotays’ Val Jean, the total exceeded 150 again by the end of the first season. I’m just going to use 150 as the complement for the entire series.

Filtering through the Memory Alpha casualty list for redundancies and estimations, I estimate about 40 deaths can be reliably gleaned from on-screen events. This gives us a survival rate of 96.2% per year across the seven years of VOY, but with a higher margin of error. If we exclude the deaths from the first episode, the survival rate is 97.6% per year.

Archer’s Enterprise had a complement of 85 upon launch, but amazingly there are no recorded deaths for the first two seasons, meaning we need to include 27 MACO’s in the ship’s complement for a total of 112. There were 13 recorded deaths in the following two years, and one additional death (Commander Tucker) six years later in the final episode, which I’m not including in the total. However, Malcolm Reed claims in the “The Council” (near the end of season 3) that there have been 23 deaths aboard the Enterprise, and claims that this exceeds a 20% casualty rate. 23 deaths out of 112 is indeed a casualty rate of 20.5% Only two deaths occur following this statement for a total of 25. This gives us an overall survival rate of 94.4% per year, but beware the power of averages, as the majority of these deaths are from the Xindi arc. In seasons 1, 2, and 4, during “normal” operation, Archer’s Enterprise had a survival rate of 99.4% per year. During the Xindi arc, the survival rate was only 79.5% per year.

If we ignore Reed’s statement and calculate using only on-screen confirmed deaths, the survival rate is 95.5% per year overall, 99.4% excluding season 3 (unchanged), and 90.2% during season 3. It seems more fair to use these number for comparison this is the only series for which we’re ever told flat out how many people have died and it has a dramatic effect on the results.

None of these figures count non-permanent deaths, cases where the character is permanently replaced by a identical copy, or “deaths” of duplicates/fusions/fissions such as Trip’s mimetic simbiot (“Sim”), Tuvix, or B’Ellana’s Klingon half.


If you count the deaths from the Xindi arc, then Archer's Enterprise and Kirk's are practically tied for the most dangerous, while Picard's Enterprise is definitively the safest. If you don't count the deaths from the Xindi arc, then Kirk's Enterprise is the most dangerous, and Archer's narrowly beats Picard's for the safest.

  • Question: should non-Starfleet persons be considered for Picard's 1701-D ship? We pretty much never heard about the civilian people dying, although presumably some of them must have. I'm pretty sure the complement you listed includes civilians.
    – Tim
    Jun 28, 2017 at 0:24
  • @Tim Hmm good point. I'll see what I can do to find civilian deaths. Jun 28, 2017 at 0:36
  • Great! I'll let you know how my mission goes, though I doubt I'll be able to get that much information- after all, I'm just a lowly barber :)
    – n_b
    Jun 28, 2017 at 16:49
  • What about the Enterprise E? You could assume similar Enterprise D crew size and they lost like a third of the ship in 1 movie. Jun 28, 2017 at 21:19
  • It would have been nice if you had mentioned the Enterprise C (Captain Rachel Garrett) with a 0% survival rate. Oct 24, 2022 at 17:08

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