Five Slack Davis Sanger Attorneys Selected as 2018 Texas Super Lawyers

Managing Partner Mike Slack, Dallas Managing Partner Ladd Sanger, Fort Worth Managing Partner John Jose, Partner Mike Davis and Of Counsel Paula Sweeney have been named to the 2018 Texas Super Lawyers list for recognition of their work in personal injury, aviation and aerospace.

Slack, Davis, Jose and Sweeney have been named Super Lawyers since 2003, and Sanger since 2004.

Super Lawyers is a rating service of the top five percent of outstanding lawyers who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The selection process is multi-phased and includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations.

103 People Survive Fiery Crash of Aero Mexico Flight 2431: Why Did the Plane Crash?

aero mexico flight 2431

Why Did Aero Mexico Flight 2431 Crash?

Based upon passenger reports and video taken by passengers on the Aero Mexico Flight 2431 which crashed near Durango, Mexico on July 31, 2018, the aircraft took off in adverse convective weather conditions commonly referred to as a thunderstorm. Passengers reported the aircraft started its takeoff roll in rain and encountered turbulence, heavy rain and hail shortly after takeoff.

The environment in and around an active convective cell can be very dangerous for an aircraft, especially those attempting to take off and land. Aircraft landings and take offs are very vulnerable to the adverse effects of a thunderstorm in the vicinity of an airport, even if the center of the storm is 20-30 miles away. In the Aero Mexico crash, witness reports suggest that a “hot” cell was very close to the airport and on the departure path of the aircraft.

How Dangerous Are Thunderstorms During Flights?

Thunderstorms can generate wind shears, strong downdrafts or microbursts, as well as heavy rain and hail. Wind shears are rapid changes in wind direction and speed relative to adjacent air. Pilots attempting to take off into a head wind can suddenly encounter a wind shear that produces a tail wind and the aircraft loses its lift. A strong downdraft or microburst can produce columns of air moving downward that exceed the aircraft’s ability to climb. The mix of downdrafts and wind shears can also alter the angle of attack over the wing and produce an aerodynamic stall and loss of lift. Hail and heavy rain entering the inlet of a turbine engine can cause a partial or complete loss of engine power.

Previous Accidents Involving Convective Activity

In the U.S., Delta Flight 191 at DFW Airport (1985) and American Airlines Flight 1420 at the Little Rock National Airport (1999) both involved fatal airline crashes where the aircraft encountered convective activity in the vicinity of the airport while attempting to land.

In the case of Delta 191, the pilots flew through a convective cell with a strong downward column of air called a microburst. The effect of the microburst and wind shears associated with it dramatically altered the angle of attack of the wing, causing a stall with the vertical column of air slamming the stalling aircraft into the ground.

With American 1420, the pilots elected to attempt a landing at the Little Rock airport with a thunderstorm converging on the airport. Landing to the north, the pilots did not arm the spoilers, a braking device, and as the aircraft touched down, weather data showed that the wind had shifted to impose a tail wind on the landing airliner. The aircraft ran off the end of the runway, crashed through structures and ended up in a marshy area next to the Arkansas River. Both Delta 191 and American 1420 experienced post-crash fires.

Contact Slack Davis Sanger

Slack Davis Sanger has experience with these types of crashes, having represented 25 surviving passengers and the family of two deceased passengers from American Flight 1420, and the families of six deceased passengers from Delta Flight 191. Our attorneys are pilots and include a former NASA engineer, so they understand the technical nature of plane crashes. If you or someone you love has suffered an injury in a plane crash, let us help. Our experienced and dedicated attorneys have a proven track record in personal injury law, including major litigation related to aviation accidents. We work tirelessly for our clients to get the results they deserve. Contact us for a free consultation.

why did aero mexico flight 2431 crash

Smart Luggage Ban Takes Effect In January 2018

smart luggage ban

Smart Luggage Ban

The 2017-2018 holiday travel season has been particularly eventful, and not in a way that travelers would have hoped. A fire shut down the Atlanta Hartsfield Jackson Airport (the world’s busiest) for multiple days, and a so-called “winter hurricane” wreaked havoc along the air routes of the U.S. eastern seaboard.

The hardship will continue for tens of thousands of travelers beginning January 15, 2018, when several of the largest U.S. domestic carriers will begin rejecting so-called “smart luggage” or “smart baggage” unless such bags contain removable batteries. Travelers using smart luggage with batteries that cannot be removed will face the unwelcome choice of abandoning their bag or missing their flight.

Why the Smart Luggage Ban Was Issued

Many “smart baggage” manufacturers foresaw potential travel restrictions and designed their bags to contain removable batteries. Unfortunately, some bag manufacturers did not anticipate such restrictions and failed to incorporate the ability to remove the battery into their design. Travelers of these bags will have spent in excess of $500 per bag for an item that simply cannot be used for its primary purpose: air travel.

To make matters worse, some of these bag manufacturers fraudulently marketed their smart bags as “FAA-compliant” when this was simply not the case. In its public statement, Delta Airlines went out of its way to draw attention to and warn consumers of the falsity of these marketing statements. If you are the owner of smart luggage, we encourage you to research whether or not your bag is on the “banned list” before departing for the airport.

Contact Slack Davis Sanger

If you paid for a piece of “smart baggage” or “smart luggage” and are frustrated that you’re unable to use it for air travel, please contact us for a free consultation.

Part 23 Reform & What it Could Pose

The Federal Aviation Regulations (FARs) are rules set forth by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) governing all aviation activities in the United States. The rules includes Part 23, which details airworthiness standards required for issuance and change of type certifications for certain airplanes, as well as determines special aspects of aircraft performance.

In 2016, the FAA released a final rule to streamline the certification process, and it was deemed a victory for many in the aviation world, providing groundbreaking provisions for aircraft manufacturers. The new rule allows manufacturers to use performance-based standards in place of prescriptive manufacturing methods that have slowed down development of new designs and technologies and caused aircraft certification costs to sky rocket. The new certification process will remove certification categories, such as utility and aerobic and, instead, use four levels of performance and risk testing based on the aircraft’s seating capacity.

Despite the advantages to the aircraft manufacturers, Part 23 reform could pose some serious consequences for the rights and safety of passengers. Under the new rule, if an aircraft meets the airworthiness requirements set forth in the Part 23 certification process, the manufacturer will not be held responsible if a crash occurs due to defective parts, dangerous designs, negligence or failure to warn of a known hazard.

Part 23 aircrafts are also known to have a history of accidents and safety issues. The reform of this rule would take away the ability to hold manufacturers liable for defective parts and allow them to continue producing unsafe aircrafts. The reformed certification is meant to bring much needed technological and safety improvements; however, there has been very little light shed on its dangers to consumers, which should have been weighed heavily in this decision.

The attorneys at Slack Davis Sanger have handled many cases involving Part 23 aircrafts. If you or a loved one have been involved in an aviation accident and need help, call us for more information at (800) 455-8686.

Slack Davis Sanger in Best Lawyers® Business Ed.

Partners Mike Davis, John Jose, Ladd Sanger, Michael Slack, and Of Counsel Paula Sweeney were included in the Best Lawyers® Business Edition for their plaintiffs’ work in personal injury litigation.

For more than three decades, Best Lawyers® has become regarded as the definitive guide to legal professionalism and excellence around the globe. Best Lawyers® is based on an exhaustive peer-review survey where more than 52,000 leading attorneys cast 5.5.million votes on the legal abilities of other lawyers in more than 130 practice areas.

Read the full Business Edition.