Almost a year ago, New York residents received the devastating news of a crash involving an American-made Boeing 737 MAX 8 airplane in the Java Sea near Indonesia. It was only a few months later that a second crash occurred in Ethiopia involving the same type of plane. It recently came to light that an investigation into the first crash by the Federal Aviation Administration concluded that the likelihood of more crashes was high. The top safety official at the FAA recently appeared before a Senate subcommittee to answer questions regarding the FAA's decisions following the conclusion of the investigation.
When you board an airplane or helicopter in New York, you expect it to be airworthy and safe to ride in. You likely have heard or read the statistics that say air travel is safer than traveling in your own or someone else's vehicle. Occasionally, however, a plane can have or develop a defect that makes it unsafe and subject to a crash or other possibly catastrophic event.
When you step aboard an aircraft, you trust that the plane will get you to your desired destination safely. To ensure the aircraft is safe to fly under high stress, heavy pressure and volatile weather conditions, it is critical that all of the parts of the plane are designed to work properly and are in perfect working condition. All product manufacturers are required to report any malfunctions, system failures and product defects that occur in order to minimize the risk of a catastrophic event.
Although a relatively safe mode of transportation, private and commercial plane crashes do occur in New York and throughout the U.S. Such accidents may be caused by any number of factors, including aviation product defects.
Whether you are boarding a commercial aircraft or flying your own small airplane, you trust that all of the parts of the plane are in good working order. Aircraft parts are designed to withstand tremendous amounts of pressure, high stress loads and variances in temperature. When all of the parts are not working together, however, it could be recipe for disaster. Aircraft collisions and crashes could be due to airplane defects or design wear and tear in different parts of the plane. These include:
Many New York pilots do not have the funds or insurance necessary to cover a significant loss. The same is true even of some small transportation or tourism companies. If you were injured, or if you experienced the loss of a loved one, the other party's financial shortcoming could be ruinous to your quality of life going forward from the incident.
Although their role may seem far removed from New York's air traffic controls, flight patterns and the day-to-day of planes in mid-air, manufacturers of the parts that make up those planes carry a heavy responsibility. The safety of pilots and passengers alike fall into their hands.
In 2017, the Consumers Union wrote an open letter online to address the House Transportation Committee's aviation panel. The CU voiced concern over the increasing use of drones and the potential for injuries because of design defects. Whether you live in New York or in other parts of the U.S., you have likely noticed the growing popularity of drones among aviation fans.
There are many companies, agencies, businesses and entities involved in ensuring the planes you fly in out of New York are safe. One such agency is the Federal Aviation Administration. You have probably heard of the FAA before, but do you know what it does to keep your flights safe?
Generally speaking, courts could hold manufacturers liable in New York for products they make which result in a personal injury to you or someone you love. However, your path to proving fault may not be as direct as you hope, especially in cases involving powerful corporations. As you might surmise from the vast resources and international holdings of powerful automotive and aviation companies, attempts to prove a vehicle design defect's responsibility for wrongful deaths or injuries are typically difficult.