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U.S. Aviation Accidents Law Blog

Charter, corporate air crashes: the role of proven legal counsel

Many readers of our aviation accidents blog at Kreindler & Kreindler LLP (a national law firm with offices in New York City, Boston and Los Angeles) have likely seen dire news accounts many times of aircraft post-accident investigations. A recurring image in many such stories is focused upon a team of investigators with the acronym NTSB emblazoned on their jackets combing through wreckage.

That is indeed common, with the National Transportation Safety Board routinely assuming central oversight in airline crashes involving major commercial airlines.

The story of an important piece of aviation safety equipment

Many of the safety devices we take for granted have not been around as long as we might assume. As just one example, consider the Enhanced Ground Proximity Warning System, now used on the majority of airplanes and mandated for commercial carriers.

The technology as we know it has only been around for about 20 years. But in that time, it has saved countless lives and greatly reduced one of the most common and deadly airplane accident scenarios.

Pedestrian electrocuted by downed power lines after plane crash

When small airplanes crash or make difficult emergency landings, those in the plane are not the only ones at risk. People on the ground may also be in danger, especially when planes go down in a residential area.

In one recent case, the pilot of a Cessna 150L plane was only mildly injured when he made an emergency landing in a Detroit, Michigan, neighborhood. But during the crash, the plane struck power lines that ultimately electrocuted a pedestrian on the ground.

Increase your chances of surviving an airplane crash (PART 3)

Today we wrap up our conversation about survival tips as they pertain to commercial airplane crashes. The key theme with these tips is awareness. Each tip has to do with being fully aware of your surroundings and being prepared for any possible event. This doesn’t mean an individual should be paranoid. It just means they should be knowledgeable about how to handle an emergency situation, much as motor vehicle drivers should be if they are on the road.

The last few tips to consider are equally important. Although many factors play into this aspect of our health, statistically, those individuals that are more fit have a better chance of survival. People who are overweight or move slowly may have a disadvantage when it comes to evacuation.

Increase your chances of surviving an airplane crash (PART 2)

In our last post we started a discussion on how to increase your chances of surviving a commercial airplane crash. Although these tips are definitely very useful and important, we all know that there are many aspects of an airplane crash that we cannot control. Nonetheless, it is important to stay vigilant and ready.

Does where you sit matter? Some think it does, while others disagree. Some say that the five rows closest to the emergency exit may be safer in terms of surviving a crash. On the other hand, a U.S. Federal Aviation Administration expert disagrees. She says every emergency is different and may impact different parts of the plane.

Increase your chances of surviving an airplane crash (PART 1)

Airplane crashes can happen at any time and for any reason. When we board a commercial aircraft, we often feel like we are at the mercy of the pilot and the large vessel that will be carrying us. Many people feel like they have absolutely no control over whether they survive a crash or not.

While this is partly true because there are many things we cannot control during the flight, there are a few things you can do to increase your chances of survival.

Report: Known small aircraft defects unreported for years

Whether you drive a car in New York or not, we suspect most everyone knows about the biggest defective auto part recall in history. We're talking about the Takata air bag action that is now affecting somewhere close to 75 million vehicles.

The reason most people know about this recall issue is that it has made significant headlines around the world. This is somewhat surprising because as of this writing, only about a dozen deaths and 100 injuries have been attributed to the defect, which involve inflators that discharge and spew deadly shrapnel into vehicle passenger compartments.

Lawsuits seek compensation for small but deadly plane crash

The aftermath of a plane crash is often a mess - both literally and figuratively. While large commercial airline crashes are likely to have the most casualties, accidents involving smaller planes can nonetheless result in death, injuries, destruction of property and difficult legal questions.

A pair of recent lawsuits is a good example. The suits are in response to a twin-engine jet crash in December 2014 that left six people dead and destroyed three homes.

Does how our airplanes are being fixed need fixing?

If you are like the average airline consumer, you probably are not educated about aviation and the engineering and maintenance involved in the industry. You are probably someone who just hopes for the best when you are boarding an aircraft, anxious to touch down safely on the soil of your travel destination.

It is safe to say that many airline passengers put blind faith in the idea that those responsible for the aircraft's manufacturing, maintenance and flight know what they are doing and do it well. A Vanity Fair piece suggests, however, that that faith not only is blind, but perhaps misguided. 

Marking the 20th anniversary of deadly commercial jet crash

While many Americans may not remember it, this month marks the 20th anniversary of a devastating commercial jet crash. On May 11, 1996, an airline called ValuJet took off from Miami International Airport on a flight bound for Atlanta. Less than 20 minutes into the flight, the DC-9 burst violently into flames and crashed in the Florida Everglades.

All 110 people aboard were killed, and recovery of the aircraft and the bodies took weeks. The crash became the first in the U.S. to result in criminal prosecution related to a plane accident.

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