Our Chicago personal injury attorneys were saddened to read a recent news story about newlywed tourists killed in a sightseeing helicopter crash this past week.
MSNBC reported that the pilot and four passengers – including a newlywed couple – were killed when the helicopter went down. The passengers were on what was intended to be a 45-minute tour; local weather reports cited heavy rainsqualls in the area at the time, and officials are now considering that weather was a significant factor in the crash.
According to recent news reports, the EC-130 model helicopter involved in the crash was less than one year old, and had been leased from Nevada Helicopter Leasing LLC. The pilot was flying the plane as part of his employment with a company named Blue Hawaiian that conducts approximately 160,000 helicopter tours each year. This is Blue Hawaiian’s second helicopter crash this decade.
If it is found that the pilot was responsible for the crash, either by negligence or recklessness in the way he flew the helicopter, or by having chosen to fly despite unsafe weather conditions, the company may be held liable for the pilot’s actions, and for injuries that resulted from the crash. An important concept in Illinois personal injury law is the idea that corporations are responsible for training and supervising their employees; therefore when the employees’ actions cause injury to others, the company may be liable for the damages those injuries cause. In the event that wrongful death lawsuits are filed on behalf of the families of the deceased victims, family members might be seeking damages in the form of lost companionship and future lost wages.
If, on the other hand, investigations reveal that the helicopter’s equipment was faulty, under notions of products liability law, either the manufacturer of the helicopter or the company who leased the helicopter may be liable for damages resulting from the tragic deaths. The helicopter leasing company would be responsible for maintaining safe equipment, and if their failure to do so led to the crash, they could be held legally responsible for the deaths.
Our Chicago personal injury lawyers represent clients across Illinois who have suffered personal injuries or lost loved ones in aviation accidents. Our attorneys have extensive experience with the unique challenges and complexities of aviation law, which has enabled us to achieve many multimillion-dollar verdicts and settlements for our clients, including a $2.33 million settlement for the family of a pilot whose Cessna plane crashed due to a defective carburetor part. Our attorneys understand that these accidents can be emotionally traumatizing for victims and their families, and our attorneys have the compassion and experience to help their clients through the legal process of recovering damages.
In order to be successful in complex aviation accidents, our attorneys have relied on close, long-standing relationships with renowned aviation experts and other industry personnel that have proven to be an invaluable asset to clients seeking their rightful damages.
A successful outcome in aviation accident litigation requires an understanding of the all the various issues that arise when an aviation accident occurs. If you or a loved one have been injured in an airplane, helicopter, or other aircraft accident, contact an attorney immediately to understand your rights under the law.