Aviation AccidentsMillions of people utilize airline travel every day, from flying to business functions to family vacations. Although most passengers safely reach their destinations, accidents unfortunately do occur. Aviation accidents range from in-flight slip and falls to crash fatalities. In fact, several catastrophic accidents have recently captured headlines and public attention. Aviation accidents may include commercial airlines, private planes, and helicopters. The National Transportation Safety Board reported over 1,200 domestic aviation accidents in 2013, more than 200 of which were fatal. If you or your family sustained injury during airline travel, your first priority is seeking medical treatment. Once you have been treated for your injuries and are able to address the legal issues, you should confer with an experienced Orange Park aviation accident lawyer regarding your legal options. Aviation law is a highly unique and complex field of law. John Fagan of First Coast Accident Lawyers is a knowledgeable and skilled Orange Park aviation accident lawyer who has successfully represented injured airline passengers and their families.
BRINGING AN AVIATION ACCIDENT LAWSUIT:
NEGLIGENCE AND OTHER CAUSES OF ACTIONThere are several claims (called “causes of action”) a party injured in an aviation accident may bring depending on the unique facts and circumstances of each individual case. The leading causes of action include, but are not limited to:
- Negligence – A Negligence claim arises when a party has a legal obligation, or duty, to another party to conduct itself in a reasonable and safe manner. The law considers an airline to be a carrier, which is an entity that contracts to transport passengers for a fee. This relationship between carrier and passenger creates a duty to the passenger. When an airline fails to safely transport passengers, it has breached its duty. If the airline’s breach causes injury to a passenger, he/she has sustained compensable damages.
- Products Liability – Products liability is a legal theory (or theories) that imposes liability on a manufacturer, seller, or other party who participated in placing a defective product, e.g., an airplane, into the stream of commerce that causes personal injuries to the product’s buyer, user, or bystander. This means that if an aviation accident occurs due to a defectively manufactured plane or part, a lawsuit may be brought against the airline and the plane manufacturer under a Products Liability theory.
- Negligent Infliction of Emotional Distress – Negligent Infliction of Emotional Distress generally accompanies a Negligence claim when the injured party sustained severe emotional injury in addition to physical injury.
- Wrongful Death – A Wrongful Death cause of action is a “derivative” claim, which is a lawsuit arising from an injury to another person. For example, if an aviation accident results in a fatality, the family (such as parents or children) may bring suit against the airline for the loss of their loved one.
PASSENGER SAFETY TIPSAirline passengers can be proactive in avoiding injuries while flying. The Federal Aviation Administration offers the following tips to promote airline passenger safety:
- Be attentive to the flight attendants who provide safety briefing at the flight’s commencement.
- Locate all safety exits before take-off.
- Remain in your seat wearing your seatbelt at the airline crew’s instruction.
- Keep the aisles free and clear of luggage, purses, and other items.