Airplane travel has certainly come a long way and is considered relatively safe by most people. In fact, your chances of being involved in an airplane accident are generally thought to be much lower than your chance of being involved in any other type of transportation accident. Having said that, airplane accidents do still happen and when they occur, the consequences can be tragic.
Despite huge advances in airplane construction and safety over the past few decades, airplane accidents continue to occur. Airplane accident statistics break down accidents into three phases: takeoff, cruise and landing. Those statistics tell us that only about 8% of all airplane fatalities happen during the cruise phase of flight. Almost half of all fatal airplane accidents happen during descent and landing with the remaining 40% or so happening during takeoff or initial climb. Interestingly, it is during these two phases of flight that the pilot is most responsible for the plane. With the advent of auto pilot and computer run navigation systems, many large planes practically pilot themselves during the cruise phase of flight. It is during the initial takeoff, ascent, descent and landing that the pilot still must be responsible for controlling the airplane.
Not surprisingly, those same airplane accident statistics tell us that 50% of all airplane accidents are attributable to pilot error. When that percentage is combined with the 25% of all airplane accidents that are solely attributable to mechanical failure, one realizes that a full 75% of all airplane accidents could have been – and should have been – avoided. Piloting any airplane is an incredible stressful job and carries with it a huge responsibility to the passengers of the airplane. No one is perfect – people make mistakes. A mistake in a commercial airplane, however, can cost hundreds of people their lives. So where does that leave the surviving family members when an airplane accident takes the life of a loved one?
Under the laws of the State of California, surviving family members may be entitled to file a wrongful death action against the negligent party or parties in the accident, says California airplane accident lawyer Emery Ledger of Ledger & Associates. If the pilot was at fault for the accident, as is frequently the case, you may be able to file a claim against not only the pilot but the airline for which the pilot worked as well. They may be negligent by virtue of the fact that the pilot was employed by them. If mechanical failure was to blame – the second most common cause of airplane accidents – you may be able to file a claim against the manufacturer of the airplane itself. Consult with a California airplane accident lawyer as soon as possible to determine what your legal options are. If the pilot, airline or manufacturer was negligent and that negligence caused the death of your loved one, then they should be held responsible and you should be compensated.
For a free and confidential detailed evaluation of your California airplane accident case, please visit the airplane accident law firm of Ledger & Associates online at www.ledgerlaw.com or call for an appointment at 1-800-300-0001.