Aviation Accidents

Pilots Under Scrutiny after San Francisco Plane Crash Injures 180, Kills 2

- Paul Zuckerman

ambulance 5779885 300x199 Pilots Under Scrutiny after San Francisco Plane Crash Injures 180, Kills 2Four pilots are under scrutiny as the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and other agencies examine what may have caused the recent devastating Asiana Airlines accident in San Francisco. Investigators have determined that the Boeing 777 was flying “significantly below” the target speed when it crashed into the runway, killing two teenage Chinese passengers and injuring more than 180 others.

Safety experts and investigators are questioning whether company policies and cockpit management techniques may have contributed to the unfortunate airplane collision, citing cockpit voice recordings from the flight that show that the pilot and co-pilot did not communicate until 1.5 seconds before the crash. “There was no discussion of any problems clearly at a time when one was developing,” said Barry Schiff, a TWA pilot and aviation safety expert.

The pilot at the controls was attempting to make his first landing with a Boeing 777 with only 43 hours of experience flying the massive jet.  His senior co-pilot was making his first flight as a trainer, with at least 3, 220 hours of experience flying the massive jetliner.

NTSB Chairwoman Deborah Hersman said during a news conference, “I think it really is too early to conclude pilot error because there’s so much that we don’t know.”

If you have been injured or lost a loved one in an aviation accident, the stress, confusion, and pain that follow may be overwhelming, but there are legal options to help survivors and their family recover. At Carpenter, Zuckerman & Rowley, our Los Angeles injury attorneys can explore all possible causes of the crash in order to help you obtain the compensation you deserve from the liable party.  Please contact us at 213-514-8332 for a free consultation to learn more about your options.

FAA Delays Closing Airport Traffic Control Towers

- Paul Zuckerman

FAA Delays Closing Airport Traffic Control TowersAccording to an announcement from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) made on Friday, April 5th, 2013, closures of many contract airport control towers across the U.S. are being delayed.  Beginning on Sunday, April, 7th, 2013, some towers were expected to shut down.  A tower in San Diego was scheduled to close on May 5th, and one in Lancaster was scheduled to shut down on April 21st.  Traffic control towers in Fullerton, Pacoima, Ramona, and Riverside will also remain in operation longer now than was expected.

Courtesy of CBS 8 KFMB-TV, the FAA proposed closing almost 200 towers across the country, including the control tower at Hawthorne Municipal Airport.  The decision to close the Hawthorne facility was reversed because the FAA decided closing the tower would have a negative impact on the national interest. The closings are needed to meet required cuts of $637 million mandated under budget sequestration. Closures have been delayed until June 15, 2013.

Some airport authorities across the country have informed the FAA that they have plans to fund airport control towers themselves rather than allowing them to close.  The delay would give those local airport authorities time to make those plans final.  There have also been legal challenges to the closings, and the agency will have some time to attempt to resolve some of those prior to the June 15th deadline.

Time is also needed to make certain pilots understand the changes that will occur at their local airports.

Aviation safety must be a top priority because when aviation accidents do occur, the results are usually fatal.  If you have lost a loved one in a plane or helicopter crash, our San Diego injury attorneys at the firm of Carpenter, Zuckerman & Rowley, LLP are well qualified to investigate all possible causes of the crash including poor performance from air traffic controllers or pilots, poor maintenance, etc.  Call us at (619) 814-9000 for a no-cost consultation.