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U.S. Aviation Accidents Law Blog

Feds investigating latest Harrison Ford aviation mishap

Some of our readers may be familiar with actor Harrison Ford’s passion of flying. The 74-year-old Ford, who apparently became a certified pilot later in life, has built up a large collection of modern and vintage aircraft in the relatively short number of years he has been flying. 

Harrison Ford has been involved in a handful of crashes over the years, and the frequency of the mishaps appears to be increasing. The most recent incident occurred last week, when Ford landed on a taxiway running parallel to a runway at a small southern California airport. Prior to landing, Ford apparently had a close call with a Boeing 737 with 116 people aboard. 

Will Zero Defect trend in aircraft manufacturing make defects obsolete?

One of the growing trends right now in manufacturing is the so-called Zero Defect movement. In addition to automotive manufacturing, another area where the trend is growing is aircraft manufacturing. The idea, boiled down, is that high quality control needs to be provided on the front end of manufacturing rather than left for post-manufacturing repair and maintenance.

Zero Defect manufacturing represents, according to proponents, a move away from the World War II approach of tolerating certain defects in order to increase production and get planes into service more quickly. One of the factors influencing this trend is the fact that there is presently a great demand for aircraft and the need to increase production efficiencies, including addressing defects in manufacturing. 

Compliance with pilot medical requirements can be issue in aircraft crash cases, P.2

Previously, we began discussing the topic of medical certification of pilots, as required by the Federal Aviation Administration, the federal agency responsible for regulating civil aviation. As we noted, medical certification can be barred on the basis of certain conditions, though the primary objective is to ensure pilots are healthy enough to safely operate an aircraft.

The medical standards a pilot must meet to be certified differ depending on the type of license at issue. The standards are, in several respects, stricter for first-class airline transport pilots and second-class commercial pilots than they are for third-class private pilots. Distant and immediate vision standards are less strict for private pilots, and there is currently no routine requirement for electrocardiograms. 

Compliance with pilot medical requirements can be issue in aircraft crash cases, P.1

A New York man who died in a plane crash in Vermont back in December was unfit to fly, according to public records. The crash, according to a preliminary National Transportation Safety Board report, found that the plane engine experienced some sort of failure before the plane went down. The pilot had only been about 150 feet in the air at the time of the engine failure.

Investigations did not show that medical problems, or that any error on his part, caused the crash. The pilot was, however, in violation of a federal law requiring him to renew his medical certification at the time of the crash. The certificate ensures, among other things, that pilots have adequate hearing and vision to fly so that they don’t put themselves or others at risk. Fortunately, nobody else was on the plan at the time of the crash.

A U.S. law firm helping victims of international plane crashes

Planes fly all over the world every single day. In some ways, our world has become smaller because of the ease with which we can traverse the planet. But it is still a very big world, and it can feel especially large when a loved one has been injured or killed in a commercial plane crash outside the United States.

Once the accident has been investigated, you may still be left with far more questions than answers: which country has jurisdiction in the accident investigation? Can you pursue legal action only in that country? What if the crash occurred in international waters? What about travel costs and language barriers?

Attorneys representing victims of helicopter accidents

For average Americans, helicopter travel isn't nearly as common as airplane travel. But for those lucky enough to experience it, the thrill is unforgettable. If you don't have the money to afford your own (and most of us don't), you may be able to enjoy a ride while on a sightseeing tour or in a chartered helicopter flight.

Unfortunately, helicopter crashes can be just as injurious and fatal as plane crashes. And everything from accident investigation to litigation can be more complicated. That's why, if you or a loved one has been involved in a helicopter accident, you need the help of a highly experienced legal professional.

Pittsburgh Family survives crash of small plane in Tanzania

On January 2, 2017 a family from Pittsburgh, consisting of a husband, wife, and three daughters were on a sightseeing trip to the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania. They were on board a Cessna Caravan II operated by Air Excel, a local carrier, which crashed upon takeoff from an airfield at Dar Es Salaam.

While the wife and daughters escaped the aircraft as it caught fire, the husband climbed over to the nose of the plane and rescued the two pilots, who had been rendered unconscious. The family members sustained only cuts and bruises, and were able to return to the United States a couple of days later.

Couple seriously hurt but baby unscathed in WI crash on takeoff

The pilot and his wife were seriously injured when the single-engine aircraft they were in crashed on takeoff from Capitol Airport in Brookfield, Wisconsin on January 4, 2017. Remarkably, their baby, who was in an infant seat, survived unscathed. The aircraft ran off the runway and crashed into a parked SUV with a trailer attached. No one was in the SUV.

The couple, who were conscious when the first responders arrived, were air-lifted to a nearby hospital. The baby went to a separate children’s hospital. The family resides in Virginia and was headed home after visiting relatives in Wisconsin.

Family found dead in wreckage of a private plane crash in Arizona

A single-engine Cessna 210 was reported missing on January 2, 2017 en route between Scottsdale, Arizona and Telluride, Colorado. The next day, searchers found debris of the plane north of the town of Payton in rugged country called the Mogollon Rim. Along with the debris, the search party found the bodies of the aircraft’s occupants, a prominent lawyer, his wife, and two daughters from a previous marriage. The four had been on a trip they always take around the holidays.

The exact cause of the tragic crash is pending an investigation. Generally a plane will go down because of pilot error, equipment failure, or weather.

The 5 basic reasons that airplanes crash

Air travel, as the cliché goes, is one of the safest forms of travel. But as anyone who has watched the news knows, accidents still happen, often with catastrophic results.

Simon Ashley Bennett, the Director of the Civil Safety and Security Unit (CSSU), University of Leicester in the UK, recently set down the five most common causes of airplane crashes.

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