The inherent danger of any airplane crash is well understood and stringent regulations exist regarding the manufacture, operation and maintenance of commercial aircraft to ensure passenger safety. In most cases, this makes air flight safe. Aviation accidents are relatively rare considering the tens of thousands of airplanes that fly every day.
Unfortunately, if a plane does crash, it is very likely that passengers will be severely injured or killed. When an airplane accident has been caused by negligence, the carrier or individual owners can be held liable for injured passengers’ losses and for the losses suffered by family members of the deceased.
It can be devastating to learn that a tragic New York airplane accident could have been avoided, but victims have legal recourse. If you or a loved one has been hurt in a plane accident, contact Hecht Kleeger & Damashek, P.C. to discuss the incident and your rights to compensation.
The National Air Traffic Controllers Association says that, at any given moment, roughly 5,000 planes are in the skies above the United States. On an average day, air traffic controllers handle some 28,500 commercial flights (major and regional airlines), 27,100 general aviation flights (private planes), 24,550 air taxi flights (planes for hire), 5,250 military flights and 2,150 air cargo flights (Federal Express, UPS, etc.).
Despite this air traffic, the Aviation Safety Network, which tracks accidents globally, says 22 airplane accidents in 2014 resulted in 992 fatalities – the most since 2005, when 1,014 people were killed. Of the incidents in 2014, eight involved passenger airlines.
Airplane accidents may be caused by:
If there has been an airplane accident, you can be assured that something went wrong that should not have. Air travel is safe as long as everyone and everything involved performs as they should.
After a major airplane accident occurs, a National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) team of specialists will respond to the accident scene and investigate every facet of the crash. An analysis of the black box data recorder on airplanes can provide important information about the contributing factors in an airplane crash. Along with gathering that data, individual NTSB specialists analyze:
The NTSB publishes preliminary and final reports of its findings, all of which are public information. In most cases, the causes of a major airline disaster are uncovered and explained, and all those who are affected by the crash have access to the data. The investigation of a general aviation accident involving a corporate jet or small private plane may be less complete. A New York law firm experienced in handling aviation accidents can undertake an independent investigation to determine all the contributing factors.
After an airplane accident that has been caused by negligence, those who have been injured can obtain compensation for medical bills, property damaged or lost, lost income due to injuries or disability, pain and suffering, and other losses. In accidents with fatalities, payments for wrongful deaths, such as for funeral and burial expenses, loss of companionship and loss of support, will be available to spouses and dependents.
When a significant airline disaster causes multiple fatalities and injuries, the airline’s management will likely recognize the company’s liability prior to the NTSB’s final report and set aside funds for legal claims. In smaller accidents, or accidents involving regional airlines, general aviation, and air cargo, the airplane is insured just as a larger airliner is, and the owners will have funds available to pay claims.
In other cases, if problems with one or more of the airplanes’ systems caused the crash, the manufacturer(s) and/or distributor(s) of those parts may be held liable for passengers’ losses. They, too, are insured and will have the funds necessary to make payments to those harmed.
Payments of some sort will be made to survivors of an airline disaster and smaller aviation accidents in many cases. However, to ensure that you obtain the full settlement you deserve in a timely manner, you should obtain the assistance of an experienced airplane accident attorney.
The airline is likely to initially offer low settlements after an accident. Such offers may be made before all of your losses are even recognized and accounted for, which can occur if you have ongoing medical problems from catastrophic injuries.
An experienced airplane accident attorney at Hecht Kleeger & Damashek can serve as your advocate in dealings with the airline or airplane owners and their legal teams. We can stand up to them and allow you to concentrate on your recovery. We can calculate the full extent of your losses and negotiate a full and fair settlement on your behalf. Where funds are set up for the survivors of major disasters, we can ensure that your claim is included, and all filing requirements and deadlines are met.
Hecht Kleeger & Damashek, P.C. is a skilled personal injury firm that can provide the legal assistance necessary to ensure you are properly compensated in complex cases involving aviation accidents. If you have lost a loved one in an airplane accident, we will fight for your rights to benefits and work hard to ensure you receive the financial settlement you deserve.
Our firm has the knowledge and resources to thoroughly investigate and document how the incident affected you and to vigorously pursue a settlement that ensures your financial recovery from the accident. Please contact Hecht Kleeger & Damashek today for a free consultation about your case.