Compassionate Lawyers by Your Side Following A Private or Small Plane Accident
Most people generally associate flying with traveling on a commercial airline. However, more than 90% of the approximately 220,000 registered aircraft in the United States fall into a category called “general aviation.” These smaller types of aircraft hold fewer than 30 passengers and are subject to different regulations than commercial planes.
Unfortunately, while the airline industry as a whole has made great strides in improving accident rates, there has been little to no improvements in the rate of passengers injured or killed in private and small planes. Some of the reasons these flights can end in tragedy include the fact that, when compared to their larger, more regulated counterparts, pilot training requirements are limited, private planes don’t have the same safety measures and backup systems, and pilots tend to have less experience and fly less frequently, making them less prepared in potentially dangerous situations. Slack Davis Sanger aviation lawyers are pilots, as well as experienced litigators who understand the specific issues surrounding private plane regulations and air crashes, and have a history of obtaining favorable outcomes in lawsuits for clients.
Private Plane Crash Lawyers with the Experience and Knowledge to Pursue Justice
In 2014, there were no commercial airplane crash deaths. During the same time period, however, 260 people lost their lives while traveling on general aviation flights and chartered commercial flights, both of which are smaller, privately-owned aircraft. Why is being a passenger on a small plane so much more dangerous? First of all, since regulations for these types of planes are more lax, these aircraft tend to have more mechanical defects and receive less frequent maintenance. Private planes are often operated by amateur pilots, whereas being a commercial airline pilot is a full-time job. As such, pilots of private planes are sometimes less capable of managing these complicated machines. Small-plane pilots also run out of fuel at a much higher rate than commercial pilots, which can lead to deadly consequences.
Representing surviving families in private plane crash cases requires special sensitivity. It also requires the ability to project, document, and recover potential future earnings of the deceased. Complex private plane crashes need strong technical and legal skills due to the many potential theories of liability under state, federal, and international law. This knowledge and deep insight into all facets of the aviation industry enable Slack Davis Sanger airplane accident attorneys, where appropriate, to file suit in jurisdictions most advantageous to our clients.
We bring knowledge and understanding of an aircraft’s history and components to the following types of small and private plane crashes:
Charter and Tour Air Crashes
Charter and tour air operators often transport busy executives, travelers, high-profile athletes, musicians, government officials, and celebrities. In most of these cases, pilots might feel tremendous pressure to maintain schedules and fulfill flight commitments, even when unsafe conditions arise. Flying at night in poor weather or piloting an overloaded aircraft are just two errors in judgment among many that can be recipes for disaster. Slack Davis Sanger aviation lawyers are experienced litigators who understand the specific issues surrounding charter and tour regulations and air crashes, and we use our in-depth knowledge to fight for your interests.
Business Jet Crashes
Some companies transport executives on business jets, because they offer privacy, enhanced security, and an environment that’s more suitable for getting work done. Flights that can’t land at larger airports, due to weather or other reasons, can be diverted to smaller airstrips, which also makes flying on business jets more flexible. However, municipal runways may be in poor condition or can be made out of dirt instead of asphalt, which raises another set of risks for passengers. And although these types of aircraft tend to be operated by professionals and not hobbyists, relaxed rules as compared to commercial airlines increase the risk of a serious crash. Like many airplane crashes, litigating accidents involving business jets requires a unique skillset — one which the lawyers at Slack Davis Sanger possess.
Warbirds are vintage military planes that are now owned by civilians. These historic aircraft may be as much as 70 to 80 years old, with many dating back to just prior to World War II. In a growing number of cities, individuals can pay to take a warbird ride, and these planes are common attractions in local airshows, often on the schedule to showcase military-style maneuvers and other in-air acrobatics. The inherent dangers of flying in a plane with older parts and components, along with the differences in how warbirds are built and fly, mean passengers are at a higher risk of serious injury and even death in a crash. With accomplished attorneys who are also licensed pilots and experience with these types of cases, Slack Davis Sanger is well-positioned to represent victims and surviving family members in accidents involving warbirds and other specialty aircraft.
International Plane Crashes and Accidents
If flying on a charter or private plane is riskier than taking a commercial flight, one can expect that flying in one of these types of aircraft in another country might also be more dangerous. Pilots in other countries may not be subject to the same requirements as U.S. pilots, and regulations concerning the condition and maintenance of aircraft abroad tend to be less restrictive than those in the U.S. Enforcement of existing laws may also be uneven in other countries, and principles of international law may make proving the cause of an accident less straightforward than in a domestic crash.
Slack Davis Sanger international airplane accident attorneys have extensive experience in a variety of private plane crash claims, offering clients the legal savvy, technical knowledge, and financial resources to pursue cases against formidable adversaries. As always, our mission is to aggressively seek advantageous resolutions for our clients.
Product Liability & Defective Products
An investigation by USA TODAY found that defective components and dangerous aircraft designs were to blame for a large number of injuries, crashes, and deaths in small planes. After conducting extensive research, the report concluded that while National Transportation Safety Board officials routinely place responsibility on pilots for accidents, a pattern of equipment problems has been covered up by manufacturers, who have kept using parts proven to be defective for years after a crash. In some cases, companies that produced these faulty parts have refused to issue a recall or only partially recalled a product, and at times have failed to acknowledge the problem at all. Slack Davis Sanger attorneys draw upon extensive experience in product liability and defective products cases to apply these principles to small plane crashes and accidents that forever change the lives of families involved.