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Plane Crash: Lawsuits Hold Government Accountable

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Lexington, KYIt may seem impossible: holding the government responsible for a plane crash. After all, what does the government have to do with the day-to-day operations of a plane or an airline? However, recently filed lawsuits blame the government for plane crashes, arguing that the crashes were the result of either negligence on the part of an air traffic controller or understaffing at air traffic control towers.

Airport RunwayOne lawsuit was filed against the federal government and the Federal Aviation Administration after a plane crash killed three people. The plane, carrying two adults and their teenage son, crashed near Pikeville Airport in October 2005. According to the lawsuit, the air traffic controller gave the pilot incorrect landing directions, causing the crash. The lawsuit seeks $10 million dollars.

Meanwhile, a federal judge has ended a civil trial regarding a 2006 plane crash, in which 49 people were killed. The lawsuit was called off after settlements were reached in most cases. Of the remaining two cases that had not been settled, one was so close to a settlement that participants asked for an extension for negotiations and the family in the other case was not likely to take part in the recently ended lawsuit.

According to the lawsuits, Comair was negligent because its pilots attempted to take off from the wrong runway. According to the Herald-Leader the pilots attempted to take off from a runway too short for their plane and a quick glance at their compass indicator would have shown them that they were going in the wrong direction.

Only one person, the pilot, survived the crash. The families of 45 passengers sued the airline, while the pilot and the families of the crew members filed suit against the FAA alleging the control tower was understaffed the day of the crash. According to FAA rules there should have been two controllers working that morning but there was only one in the tower.

While plane crashes are expected to result in the loss of lives of those onboard the plane, people rarely expect those on the ground are also at risk. Sadly, five lives were lost in early August when a plane crashed into a home in Oregon. Three children, aged 12, 10 and nine, were killed when the plane crashed into the rented vacation home they were in. Three other people, including two children, were being treated at a local hospital. The pilot and the passenger on the plane also died in the crash.

According to a witness, the plane clipped a tree and then crashed into the lower backside of the house. The crash resulted in a fireball, which caused pieces of the house to be shot hundreds of feet from where the house stood.

If you or someone you love was harmed in a plane crash, either as a passenger on the plane or as a stander-by on the ground, it is vital that you speak to a lawyer about your legal options. A lawyer understands the complexities of a plane crash and can dig through the evidence to ensure that all responsible parties are held accountable. Often, plane crashes are the result of the actions of multiple parties rather than one person or organization.


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