Are We in Danger of Plane Crashes?
When the topic of plane crashes comes up, most of us think about large passenger planes and hundreds of deaths. While such accidents do happen on occasion, most aviation incidents involve much smaller planes and fewer deaths. These might include small commercial planes, sightseeing planes, privately owned aircraft, or flight school planes.
Last month’s news of a fatal plane crash involving a flight instructor and two passengers in New Milford has brought attention to the dangers posed by small aircraft. The Cessna C-172, owned by Arrow Aviation, crashed at the end of the runway at Candlelight Farms Airport. It was the second fatal incident involving the company in less than a month.
What Causes Planes to Crash?
When it comes to commercial flights (those involving more than 10 passengers), pilot error is reported as the most common cause of accidents, accounting for 58% of crashes, more than weather, mechanical failure, and sabotage combined.
However, general aviation accidents, which includes private planes and hobbyist aircraft, account for more fatalities per year. According to the National Transportation Safety Board, commercial airlines account for 4.03 fatalities per million flight hours, while general aviation has 22.43 fatalities per million flight hours. (Statistics are for the years 1998-2007.)
The majority of these accidents occur because the pilot lost control in-flight. Another leading reason is what is known as “controlled flight into terrain,” meaning the pilot failed to see the ground, the mountain, a body of water, or some other obstacle and flew straight into it. Other listed causes include running out of fuel, bad landings, bad weather or poor visibility, and wildlife strikes.
A USA Today report has claimed that mechanical failure is actually a much more common cause for general aviation accidents than most people realize. This is because manufacturers have carried out a concerted campaign to cover up problems and hide defects from investigators. The thought that any company would put their own profits ahead of other people’s lives is frightening.
Plane Crashes, When They Happen, Are Deadly
The true extent of the problem is hard to quantify. Plane crashes can be difficult to investigate and many accidents end up with no identifiable cause. This can also make trying cases and receiving proper compensation very difficult for victims.
The sad truth is that very few people survive plane crashes. If you have a loved one who died in a plane crash as the result of negligence, whether on the part of the pilot, the airline, the manufacturer, or a maintenance company, then you are entitled to be fully compensated for your loss. At Naizby Law, we know that no amount of money can ever bring back your loved ones, but we believe that you deserve the peace of mind that can come from knowing that justice has been served.
To speak to one of our knowledgeable wrongful death attorneys, please call (203) 245-8500 and schedule a free consultation.
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For over 20 years, John has exclusively represented people (not corporations).
John has received the America’s Top 100 Attorneys Lifetime Achievement Award.
Since the year 2000, John has been a Board Certified Civil Lawyer.
John is a graduate and senior instructor at the Trial Lawyers College.