Michael Slack, licensed pilot and partner with Slack Davis Sanger, a national law firm representing victims of helicopter and plane crashes can give insight on what may have led to the the fiery helicopter crash that killed five people Monday in Sevier County, 200 miles east of Nashville.
Based upon the firm’s experience handling tour and sightseeing crash cases, Mr. Slack points out:
–It is very common for sightseeing flights to be conducted in areas with rising terrain and changing weather conditions contributing to fatal crashes.
–Many tour and sightseeing pilots haven’t been properly familiarized with local areas or the type of helicopter being flown to conduct the flights safely.
–Tour and sightseeing flights tend to occur with a heavy passenger loads so the helicopters are operating near their performance limitations in certain phases of flight.
–Tour and sightseeing flights are typically conducted on schedules which place heavy demands on pilots and equipment.
–Tour pilots are usually placed in heavy workload situations between flying in challenging conditions, keeping the tour on schedule and conducting and narrating the tour.
Mr. Slack can also discuss how the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) conducts investigations on these types of crashes and what they look for. According to public information sources, witnesses reported hearing explosions after seeing the helicopter crash into trees. The NTSB is expected to be on scene today along with party representatives invited by the NTSB to participate in the investigation.
Slack Davis Sanger is currently representing passengers injured in a helicopter tour crash that occurred in Hawaii in January, 2016.