Recent Developments

Recent Developments

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Speiser Krause Monitoring the Investigation into the Crash a Boeing B-17G Flying Fortress Vintage World War II Aircraft

On Wednesday, October 2, 2019 at approximately 10:00 a.m. a vintage Boeing B-17G Flying Fortress World War II era aircraft crashed at the Bradley International Airport located in Windsor Locks, Connecticut, killing 5 passengers and 2 crew members.  5 other passengers and the flight engineer were seriously injured, as was a ground based airport worker.
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Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Mid-Air Collision of Sightseeing Float Planes in Ketchikan, Alaska


On May 13, 2019, two de Havilland sightseeing float planes collided in mid-air near Ketchikan, Alaska as they were touring Alaska’s Misty Fjords National Monument which is part of Tongass National Forest.  Six people died as a result of the collision and 10 people have been admitted to hospitals with significant injuries.  The float planes were carrying passengers from the cruise ship Royal Princess operated by Princess Cruises.  The larger of the two aircraft, a de Havilland DHC-3, Federal Aviation Administration (“FAA”) Registration Number N959PA, commonly referred to as a de Havilland Otter, was carrying 10 passengers and a pilot.  The aircraft was operated by Venture Travel LLC doing business as Taquan Air, a sightseeing air tour operator that operates in an around Ketchikan, and owned by Pantechnicon Aviation, Ltd.
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Tuesday, April 2, 2019

April 2, 2019 Update Regarding the Crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302

In the wake of the crashes of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 and Lion Air Flight 610, the United States Department of Justice has opened a potential criminal investigation concerning the manner in which the fleet of Boeing 737-8 and 737-9 Max aircraft (the “737 Max aircraft”) was certified.  On Monday, April 1, 2019, a federal grand jury served a subpoena on a former Boeing flight control engineer seeking all documentation related to the 737 Max aircraft.  This was at least the second federal grand jury subpoena issued in the context of the criminal probe. 


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Thursday, March 14, 2019

Second Update Regarding the Crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302

On Wednesday, March 13, 2019, the United States and Canada each issued emergency orders grounding the fleet of Boeing 737-8 and 737-9 Max aircraft (the “737 Max aircraft”).  A copy of the FAA’s Emergency Order can be found here.  The emergency order permits those aircraft currently in the air to proceed to landing at their intended destinations but once the aircraft has landed, they will not be allowed to engage in further flight until aviation authorities lift the emergency orders.  The air carrier, however, may apply for non-passenger special ferry flight permits to move the aircraft for storage, modification, testing or maintenance.


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Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Update on the Crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302

In the aftermath of the crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302, numerous aviation authorities throughout the world have called into question the safety of the 737 Max 8 model aircraft.  Although the Federal Aviation Administration and The Boeing Company have issued statements attesting to the aircraft’s safety, foreign aviation authorities are justifiably concerned that the crash of Ethiopian Flight 302 and Lion Air Flight 610 share a common causal connection.  As a result, various foreign countries, and airlines, have grounded the 737 Max 8 fleet until more information is known regarding the causes of each crash.  China, Singapore, Australia, Malaysia, India and the European Union have each banned the 737 Max 8 aircraft from operating within its borders or airspace.  A copy of the Emergency Airworthiness Directive issued by the European Union prohibiting the 737 Max 8 aircraft from operating in Europe can be found here.  In fact, the only two governments continuing to allow the aircraft to operate within their borders or airspace are the United States and Canada.


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Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Preliminary Report Released by Indonesian Aviation Authorities

Indonesian authorities released a preliminary report regarding their findings into the crash of Lion Air Flight 610.  As mentioned in prior posts, early reports indicated that accident investigators were focusing on the aircraft’s new Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (M.C.A.S.) which is an automated system designed to prevent the aircraft from entering an aerodynamic stall.  The preliminary report confirmed that this was the investigators’ focus, although the report stated that it was still too early to identify a specific cause for the crash.


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Thursday, April 26, 2018

Update on Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 Mid-Air Engine Failure

On April 20, 2018, the Federal Aviation Administration issued Emergency Airworthiness Directive (“AD”) 2018-09-51 that incorporated, in part, a Service Bulletin (“SB”) 56-7B 72-1033 issued by CFM International, S.A., the manufacturer of the engine that failed in-flight on April 17, 2018, that killed a passenger.  An AD is a rule published by the FAA that requires certain actions be completed for an aircraft to be considered airworthy. 


Read more . . .


Monday, November 16, 2015

Crash of ExecuFlight Charter Jet in Akron, Ohio

On Tuesday, November 10, 2015, a British Aerospace BAe-125-700A jet bearing serial number NA-0252, owned by RAIS Group International NC, LLC, crashed into a residential apartment building during its approach to Runway 25 at the Akron Fulton International Airport located in Akron, Ohio.  Tragically, all seven passengers, all principals and employees of south Florida-based Pebb Enterprises, were killed along with the flight crew.

The aircraft, which was being operated as a charter flight by ExecuFlight, Inc., departed from Fort Lauderdale, Florida the day prior to the crash making stops in Minneapolis, Moline, St. Louis, and ultimately Cincinnati, Ohio, where the passengers and crew spent Monday evening.  The aircraft then departed Cincinnati for Dayton Tuesday morning, and was on its way to Akron, Ohio when the tragedy occurred.  

The National Transportation Safety Board is leading the investigation and the cockpit voice recorder has been recovered and sent to the NTSB’s lab in Washington, D.C. for analysis.  No distress calls were received from the aircraft prior to the crash.  Parties to the investigation include Beechcraft Corporation who is the current type certificate holder for the accident aircraft as well as Honeywell International, the engine manufacturer.

The investigation will undoubtedly focus on the actions of the flight crew, mechanical issues, as well as weather in the vicinity of the airport at the time of the crash.  Weather was reported to consist of fog and mist with visibility of two miles.  The Akron Fulton International Airport is an uncontrolled airport, which means that there is no air traffic control tower located at the airport.  Air traffic control services are provided by Akron-Canton Approach Control for the airport.  The NTSB has interviewed a certified flight instructor who landed immediately prior to the accident aircraft. The flight instructor pilot reported that after landing he radioed the accident aircraft to advise that he "broke out [of the cloud layer] right at minimums." He further reported that the accident aircraft acknowledged this transmission by stating, "Thanks for the update." This was the last known communication from the accident aircraft.

Speiser Krause has represented numerous passengers arising from private jet charter operation crashes as well as involving the make and model of the accident aircraft.  There are a host of legal issues which could impact victims’ rights, including the application of the General Aviation Revitalization Act (“GARA”) which in certain circumstances can limit the ability to file suit against an aircraft or component manufacturer if the failed component is more than 18 years old.  The partners at Speiser Krause are available to answer any questions you have concerning this tragedy.


Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Jeanne O'Grady to speak at the 10th Annual European Air Law Seminar in Munich, Germany on September 14, 2015

Partner Jeanne O'Grady to address the prestigious European Air Law Association on the availability of moral damages in global litigation arising from an aviation disaster.

Learn More Here


Monday, August 10, 2015

Douglas Latto to address the AVICON Aviation Insurance Conference on September 10-11, 2015

Partner Douglas Latto will be a featured speaker at the AVICON Aviation Insurance Conference discussing the plaintiff's perspective on aviation accident litigation.


Monday, July 27, 2015

Lawsuits Filed Against Wind Turbine Operator

The firm recently filed lawsuits on behalf of three families arising from the April 27, 2014 crash of a Piper PA 32R-300 aircraft that impacted an unlit wind turbine in Highmore, South Dakota.  The victims of the crash, young men in their 20's and 30's, were traveling as passengers and were returning home to their families from a trip to Texas.  At approximately 9:15 p.m. the aircraft impacted the unlit wind turbine, causing it to crash and killing all aboard.  Pursuant to various Federal Aviation Regulations and guidelines, the owner and operator of the wind turbine, NextEra Energy, was required to ensure that the wind turbine was lit.  If, however, the lighting system was not functioning, NextEra Energy was obligated to notify the local Flight Standards District Office of the outage so that a warning could be issued to pilots flying in the vicinity of the wind turbine that the light was not working.  Unfortunately, NextEra Energy failed in both of these obligations causing the aircraft to impact the unlit wind turbine.  The lawsuits, filed by each of the passenger’s widows in the Circuit Court of the 11th Judicial Circuit in and for Miami-Dade County, Florida, seek all available wrongful death and survival damages as a result of this tragedy. 


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