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U.S. Aviation Accidents Law Blog

Jurisdiction considerations in international aviation crash cases

International flights are a much faster option for traveling overseas than taking a cruise. When you're making reservations, boarding your flight, and in the air, you're putting your trust in the airline and airplane manufacturer to keep you safe.

Unfortunately, international flights sometimes have safety issues that put the passengers and crew at risk. When there is an incident, victims often wonder what they can do to recover the damages they're facing because of it. The answer to this isn't always easy to find out.

Time limits set by the General Aviation Revitalization Act

People who travel in private planes and small aircraft might not realize that they don't have strong protections against manufacturer defects in some cases. The General Aviation Revitalization Act of 1994 errs on the side of the manufacturer if the aircraft is more than 18 years old. Many private planes fit in to that older age bracket.

President Bill Clinton signed the bill into law in 1994 to help prevent consumers from seeking compensation due to failing components of aircraft that are older than 18 years. This was intended in part to allow for the normal wear and tear on the components. It applies to aircraft that aren't used for scheduled commercial flights and that contain fewer than 20 seats for passengers.

Compass failures lead to issues on some plane flights

Anyone who opts to travel on an airline is putting their trust in the pilots who are operating the plane. Most pilots do their job duties with safety as the top priority; however, they also have to rely heavily on the equipment that's in the cockpit. Unfortunately, there are times when the equipment will fail.

Pilots are usually well trained on what to do if some of the equipment fails, so there's a chance that you'll never know if there's an issue in the cockpit. When the pilot can't compensate for the failed equipment, there could be serious consequences.

Aircraft manufacturers need more oversight

Congress is gearing up to take a harsh stance against the very loose oversights in the airline industry. This news comes after the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee and the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee both reviewed information about the 346 deaths that resulted from two Boeing 737 Max crashes.

Those two crashes were caused when a malfunction of the jetliner caused the nose of the aircraft to be pushed down until it crashed. Despite the knowledge of what happened in the first crash on Oct. 29, 2018, the aircraft wasn't grounded. It was only after the second crash, which occurred on Mar. 10, 2019 that Boeing and the Federal Aviation Administration took the step to ground the plane. The United States was the last major government to do this as all others had already denoted that the 737 Max was unsafe.

Don't downplay the importance of seat belts on airplanes

Passengers on airliners assume that the aircraft has passed preflight inspections for safety so they can have a safe flight. Some might not realize, however, that there are a lot of smaller things that might not be checked before each flight. For example, the seat belts aren't usually checked in between each flight.

It's easy to overlook how important these smaller safety devices are when you're on an airplane. Assuming that the seat belts don't really do any good is a huge misconception that nobody should ever make. Thinking that the seat belts won't help you in a crash could be dangerous thinking, since many people do survive such events.

Seeking compensation after an international plane crash

International airline crashes can lead to significant injuries, as well as mass fatalities. For the victims of these crashes and their family members, the aftermath can be devastating. One thing that often comes to mind when hearing about one of these crashes is finding out what happened.

The cause of the crash is important so that the aviation industry can attempt to rectify the issue on future flights. It's also important because it enables victims of the crash to seek compensation for the damages they're dealing with due to their injuries or their loved one's death. Understanding the cause of a crash helps assign liability to the appropriate parties.

Commercial plane crash fatalities cut in half from 2018 to 2019

It's often said that flying is safer than driving, but some people still have trouble putting their trust in airlines. For those who do fly, there is good news – worldwide, the number of deaths from commercial airplane crashes was down by more than 50% in 2019 than there were in 2018.

This is due, at least in part, to improvements in the airline industry. With each crash that occurs, more information about how safety can be improved comes up. The reduction in deaths from 2018 to 2019 isn't abnormal. Even though the airline industry was seeing a steady increase in business, the number of fatalities continues to fall.

Turbulence causes 75 percent of weather-related plane crashes

Turbulence is a serious problem in any aircraft; however, you might feel it more in a smaller plane. There's also a chance that the turbulence will impact the smaller planes in a more profound manner. Because of this, there's a chance that you might suffer injuries if the pilot has to go through it.

There are a few causes of turbulence that are common. Sometimes, it's evident to an experienced pilot that they will have to go through certain types of turbulence. In those cases, they can alert their passengers to this possibility. Still, there are some instances in which it just sneaks up on the plane.

Victims of plane crashes shouldn't face financial ruin

Aircraft engineers and designers have the unique task of ensuring that the designs they present for these airplanes are safe and suitable for use. For the most part, aircraft designs are scrutinized and checked before they're put to use. There might still be times when this doesn't happen or there is an issue that was overlooked.

The ramifications of design defects can be fatal if they impact the ability of the aircraft to fly. When victims of crashes caused by these defects survive, they may suffer very serious injuries. The cost of medical care and the other life impacts are considerable.

Fight for your rights after a commercial airplane crash

Airline crashes aren't common, but they can lead to devastating injuries when they do occur. If you're involved in one of these crashes, you need to ensure that you aren't going to face financial devastation because of it. We're here to help you seek compensation from the liable parties for the damages you're facing because of the aviation disaster.

When you opt to pursue a claim for compensation after an event like this, you might not only have to look at naming the airline as a defendant. In some cases, the manufacturer of the airplane or the components used to manufacture, repair or upkeep the aircraft. Getting to the bottom of the cause of the crash is one of the necessities when you file a claim.

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