Aviation Disasters

Within the last decade, Dewsnup, King & Olsen has become Utah’s distinguished law firm for aircraft crashes and disasters. The attorneys at our Salt Lake City office specialize in representing victims of aviation disasters, including plane and helicopter crashes. The aviation disaster attorneys at Dewsnup, King & Olsen have represented victims in disasters both on an national and international level.

In its most recent forecast (2016-2036), the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) predicted that passenger air travel will more than double in the next 20 years.

So although air travel is considered to be safer than automobile travel, the increased volume of travel will increase the risk of aviation disasters. The FAA also has determined the top 10 factors for fatal general aviation accidents:

  1. Loss of Control Inflight
  2. Controlled Flight into Terrain
  3. System Component Failure – (Power plant)
  4. Low Altitude Operations
  5. Other
  6. System Component Failure (Non-power plant)
  7. Fuel Related
  8. Unknown or Undetermined
  9. Windshear or Thunderstorm
  10. Midair Collisions

This type of litigation is complex and not only demands strong legal representation but a firm understanding of the aviation industry. Many varying and competing theories of legal liability exist under state, federal, and international law. Multiple defendants and at fault parties are usually involved in a single airline crash. In addition, in most cases, several options can exist for trial venues. To hold a party responsible for an airplane accident, the plaintiff must prove the defendant failed to meet the legal standard related to operating the aircraft, or related to engineering, the maintenance or to other operational issues or standards.

The FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) are the two agencies responsible for air travel safety. Safety standards for airplane manufacture, operation, maintenance and pilot conduct are set and regulated by both agencies. The FAA and NTSB investigate aviation disasters and accidents.

Aviation disaster law covers commercial carriers as well as general aviation accidents. General aviation includes all non-commercial flights with privately owned and operated aircraft, such as small planes, personal and business jets, charter flights, and helicopters. Commercial airline crashes are a very complex process, although most crashes occur in general aviation flights. Both commercial and general aviation disasters require a time-intensive investigation done by the FAA and NTSB to establish the cause of the crash. Aviation disaster attorneys at Dewnsup, King & Olsen work with administrators and independent investigators to determine who is at fault, damages, and correct compensation for the victims and families of disasters.