A hole in a plane operated by Daallo Airlines as it sits on the runway of the airport in Mogadishu, Somalia, on Feb. 2. (Str/Associated Press)

The Feb. 4 news article “Hole in jet may be result of bomb blast” described the cabin rupture of a Daallo Airlines Airbus 321 plane. The survival of the more than 70 passengers (one remains unaccounted for) and additional crew may be attributable to more than pilot skill and good fortune. From the photographs I’ve seen, it appears that meeting or exceeding a Federal Aviation Administration aircraft structural design standard on pressurized compartment loads may have kept the fuselage together long enough for the safe landing.

This “hole size” rule requires that a transport category aircraft be designed to withstand a 20-square-foot hole in a pressurized compartment.

This is the perfect counterpoint to politicians who thoughtlessly decry “over-regulation” and promise to cut federal red tape. Regulations save lives.

Gary A. Michel, North Potomac

The writer is retired from the Federal Aviation Administration as an airworthiness attorney.