Advancements in aircraft technology and security have made flying safer. However, airplane accidents do occur, and they are often catastrophic resulting in severe injuries or death. Litigation can be highly complex. At Peterson & Associates, P.C., we employ skilled and experienced Kansas City airplane accident lawyers committed to fighting for just compensation for injured passengers.
Flight 1340 Settlement: How Our Aviation Accident Lawyer Helped Multiple Clients
In 2003, our founding attorney, David M. Peterson, settled claims for passengers who were on board a February 8, 1998, American Airlines flight from Kansas City to Chicago O'Hare International Airport.
Flight 1340 was attempting to land in Chicago under what is known as a Category II approach, where vertical visibility was 100 feet. When the plane broke through the clouds, the pilot finally realized he was heading straight into the dirt, well in front of the runway. He pulled the nose of the plane up but crashed the plane over 1,000 feet short of the runway, totaling the Boeing 727.
Fortunately, no one was killed, but many people were injured, and everyone suffered psychological damage, many developing a permanent fear of flying.
The lawsuit resulted in confidential settlements for all our clients and a change in American Airlines' landing protocol!
Identifying the Cause of Airplane Crashes
Determining who caused the plane crash is essential before you file an aviation injury lawsuit. Sometimes the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) are involved in the accident investigation. Regardless, having an experienced legal advocate can make all the difference in identifying the cause and liable parties.
Some of the common causes of airplane accidents include:
- Fuel problems
- Faulty maintenance
- Federal air traffic controller error
- Pilot error
- Defective design
- Structural issues
- Defective equipment
Our attorneys know what questions to ask and what evidence to analyze to determine what caused your airplane accident.
Airplane Accident Compensation
Victims of airplane accidents may seek compensation for past, current, and future medical expenses incurred due to their injuries. These expenses include the cost of doctor visits, hospital stays, surgeries, prescription medications, rehabilitation therapies, and any other necessary treatments. If your loved one died because of their plane accident injuries, any accident-related medical expenses incurred from the time of the accident until the time of death may be part of a wrongful death recovery.
An airplane accident recovery may include any income you can't earn because of your injuries. This includes wages, benefits, raises, bonuses, income from self-employment, and loss of future earning capacity.
Pain and Suffering
Plane accident victims can seek compensation for the pain and suffering endured as a result of their injuries. Pain and suffering damages can include compensation for things such as physical pain, anxiety, insomnia, depression, and other conditions.
Loss of Companionship
If your loved one died in a plane crash, you might be able to recover for your loss of companionship. Loss of companionship damages are calculated based on various factors, including the victim's age, health, and relationship with their surviving family members.
Punitive damages might be possible if the defendant acted with flagrant and deliberate disregard for the safety of others. Punitive damages are meant to punish wrongdoers and deter them from engaging in similar behavior in the future.
You can also recover for any other damages sustained in the accident. These damages may include but are not limited to funeral costs if your loved one died and property damage for any personal belongings.
What to Do After a Plane Accident
The moments following an airplane accident are often chaotic. It's essential to follow directions. Additionally, if you can:
- Accept medical attention. First responders will come to the accident scene. It's critical that you accept medical attention so that any injuries can be treated and documented.
- Gather evidence. The evidence you can gather at the accident scene depends on how badly you were hurt and whether your cellphone was damaged. If you can, take photos and video of the accident scene. Try to remember anything that you can about the circumstances that led to the accident.
In the days following your accident, it's essential to:
- Follow medical advice. You may need extensive medical treatment. Follow your doctor's treatment plan to protect your physical and legal recoveries.
- Watch what you say or post online. Do not answer any questions that you are asked about the accident. Instead, refer the airline, its insurer, or its lawyer to your airplane accident attorney. Also, do not post about the accident or your injuries on social media.
- Contact an experienced airplane accident lawyer. Our experienced Kansas City airplane accident lawyers will make sure that all of your rights are protected and that no costly mistakes are made that could interfere with your recovery.
Contact Our Experienced Aviation Injury Lawyers Today
Since 1993, the attorneys at Peterson & Associates, P.C. have gained quality legal experience by helping clients resolve thousands of cases. In that time, our Kansas City airplane accident attorneys have obtained over $500 million on behalf of our clients. Our legal team continues a long tradition of aggressive courtroom tactics and is qualified to fight for justice in your aircraft accident case. Contact us today to learn more.