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U.S. Aviation Accidents Law Blog

Occupants survive small plane crash into river

Thousands of small plane flights happen every week across the country, and there are probably more flights taken by propeller aircraft than by passenger jets around the world. Although there are many advantages to smaller aircraft, they may be more prone to weather events and other risks.

But some problems with flights are neither the fault of pilots or so-called acts of God. Aircraft require regular maintenance and their parts must be of the highest quality. If manufacturers or other people helping with plane construction and conditioning are negligent in their duties, they may be liable for the results of accidents.

What happens if a family member is in a plane crash?

Many people are afraid of flying, despite the statistics that show it is a relatively safe way to travel great distances. But some fears can be founded when there are problems with one or more of the many systems that keep a jet functioning from takeoff to landing. The fear here is that something went wrong that could have been prevented.

  • What preventable problems could cause a plane crash?

Jets require a lot of maintenance, especially as they approach the end of their use life. Even the smallest mistake or omission by a member of the flight crew or ground crew could result in a disaster. Design and manufacturing defects that occurred in the early phases of a plane's construction could eventually lead to problems as well.

  • What are victims and their families entitled to after a crash?

Jet planes can be built with design problems

Airplanes and airlines can seem nearly flawless, even if their arrivals and departures are often late. Pilots are always trained professionals and nearly all commercial flights come off without a hitch. But the forces and mechanics involved mean that any one problem can cause a catastrophic failure.

Some issues are due to pilot error or foul weather. Before instrument landing systems, pilots and air traffic controllers had to work hard to make sure collisions and runway misses did not happen. But some issues are related to the construction of an aircraft or its design before anyone tried to put it together.

Airline injuries are a complicated issue

Maybe it was a patch of turbulence that threw people around. Maybe it was an accident involving a cabin cart. The amazing physics of plane flight means that any failure, no matter how small, has the potential to cause serious damage or injury.

There are many cases in which an airline or one of its employees could be liable for a specific injury that someone suffered on a plane. There are, however, several complicated legal issues involved in any claim for financial damages. The Federal Aviation Act requires U.S. air carriers to operate with a high attention to detail when it comes to safety.

Rubber valve may have caused a deadly helicopter crash

Aircraft take off and land safely thousands of times every day, so it may seem almost inevitable that flights always go safely. However, getting and staying airborne requires the smooth operation of hundreds of moving parts inside one of humanity's most complex machines.

Each of those parts must be made to specific quality standards because the risk of failure is too great to contemplate. This is why the victims of faulty designs or manufacturing of aircraft products have the right to seek financial damages for the consequences of these failures, as rare as they are.

Lawsuit alleges pilot was responsible for small plane crash

Commercial airline accidents are very rare, making large jet airplanes one of the safest ways of crossing great distances. The engineering and maintenance involved in keeping a fleet of jumbo jets in the sky helps encourage the quality control that makes air travel possible.

Smaller planes, however, may be less reliable. Lighter aircraft are more vulnerable to sudden changes in the weather or air-specific hazards like iced wings. Some pilots and owners may not be held to the same strict standards as commercial operators who are responsible for thousands of lives every day.

Some still experienced loss in a year of low airline fatalities

Plenty of people suffer from aviophobia, or the irrational fear of flying. Indeed, the sheer physics of lifting hundreds of tons of machinery into the air for hours boggles even the most scientific mind. This fear can be reduced or overcome with specific therapies, which leaves only the rational problems associated with commercial flights.

We have heard many times over the years that flight is the most statistically safe form of long-distance travel. But accidents still happen and the chances of a commercial airliner's crash causing death or injury are higher than many other forms of transportation disaster.

Crack in airplane cabin causes emergency descent

We can take air travel for granted sometimes, while others can fret far too much about the possible dangers. Commercial flights are still safer than many other types of transport in and out of New York City, but accidents can happen if aircraft and the products that help run them are defective or out of date.

A crack appeared in the skin of a commercial airliner, wide enough to begin taking the air out of the cabin. The pilots had to rush to descend to a safe level where the atmospheric pressure was safe. After the landing, investigators found a crack behind the cockpit a foot long.

Aviation training flight crash leads to lawsuit

Flight has been in the dreams of humans since time immemorial. Now, we take for granted our ability to jet off to any destination in the world, no matter how distant. In the early 20th century, many aviation pioneers died to make that possible. But people can still be injured or killed while aspiring for flight.

There are many famous commercial aviation accidents that have affected hundreds of lives. But the risks per aircraft are often higher with smaller planes like single-propeller craft used for training. These are more susceptible to wind shear, turbulence and other unpredictable conditions that may disable or down an aircraft.

FAA considers fines over possible defective plane parts

Commercial air flight is certainly the fastest way to cross the major distances on the planet, and it remains one of the safest. The chances of a serious injury or death on board a large airliner is still far less likely than a car accident or other incident on land or sea. This is why any accident is investigated when it affects the security of plane trips.

A series of incidents involving a recently released model of airliner struck fear around the world when it appeared the manufacturer had been trying to work through some problems with the plane. More than 150 people were killed when one of these planes crashed outside a major international airport in Africa.

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