All You Need to Know About Airplane Accidents

Although airplanes have become a commonplace and respected form of transportation today, as with any transportation method, there are risks associated with air travel. Many different lawsuits throughout history have been filed against pilots, manufacturers, and other aviation-adjacent parties. Many people have used airplane accident lawyers to help them file these lawsuits, and they have filed them for different reasons.

What can go wrong on an airplane?

The leading cause of airplane crashes or accidents is pilot error. Some sources have calculated that error on behalf of pilots can account for 50% of airplane crashes. Another contributing factor to accidents caused by pilot error can be weather. Ice, storms, and other potential visibility issues can cause problems for both the planes themselves as well as the pilot’s ability to navigate the planes.

Another issue that can occur when operating an airplane is an error with one of the machine’s component parts. A failure or defect in one part of the plane, whether it is in the electrical wiring, the fuel system, or the landing mechanisms, can cause a crash or other accident.

Who is liable for plane crashes?

When a plaintiff wants to file a suit after experiencing a plane crash, their legal counsel needs to understand whom to file the suit against by determining the liable party. Airlines are often found to be liable for any injuries in the event of an airplane crash.

However, if it turns out that the accident was caused by a faulty piece of machinery in the plane, then manufacturers of airplanes or the component parts of airplanes can be held responsible for any resulting injuries. This stems from the legal theory of strict product liability. Product liability means that defects in design, manufacturing errors and failure to warn consumers and users about potential dangers of malfunctioning machine components can lead to manufacturer liability.

Because airplanes are common carriers under the law, there are heightened duties of care that airlines owe their passengers. This classification can make than an easier target for a lawsuit than if this were not the case.

Who investigates plane crashes?

In most cases, a plane crash will be investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board, or NTSB. The NTSB conducts investigations into accidents as well as working on safety studies and promoting safety recommendations for safe air travel.

After an accident, the NTSB determines its most probable cause and issues the necessary safety recommendations that they believe will best prevent any future accidents of a similar caliber. They also assist victims of transportation accidents and their families after the incidents have occurred.

Airplane accidents and compensation for loss

When airplanes or other aircraft experience crashes, they usually involve severe injuries and an extensive list of damages. Both the damages and the injuries tend to lead to lawsuits. Lawsuits against the manufacturers of planes or parts of planes, as well as wrongful death suits, have the potential to recover millions of dollars both for victims and for surviving family members of anyone who may have been killed in the accident.

However, international flights are sometimes covered by different rules: The international agreement called the Montreal Convention establishes the liability of airlines for crashes that involve death, damages, and injury on internship flights. According to the Montreal Convention, the surviving members of each deceased passenger where this convention applies are entitled to a minimum compensation of around $150,000.

Final thoughts

If you or someone you love has been injured in an airplane accident, it is key to hire legal counsel who is skilled in dealing with matters of airplane accident law. Your attorney can help you navigate the legal system to make sure you are getting the compensation and the justice you deserve.

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