Aviation Accidents

New Mexico Aircraft Accident Law Firm

“Aviation in itself is not inherently dangerous. But to an even greater degree than the sea, it is terribly unforgiving of any carelessness, incapacity or neglect.”.

Captain A. G. Lamplugh, British Aviation Insurance Group, London. c. early 1930's.

Airplanes, helicopters, and hot air balloons do not fall out of the sky and crash for no reason. Airplane accidents are always avoidable. In the entire history of human flight, investigations always turn up a causal chain of errors, omissions, and human factors which lead to the plane, helicopter, or balloon crash: faulty parts, faulty mechanic work, pilot negligence or error, air traffic controller negligence or error, or a defective aircraft design.

t is a common misconception that the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) or the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will investigate and determine the cause of your accident, and pursue justice. The reality is that these organizations are likely to fail the victims of general aviation and airline airplane and helicopter accidents. The NTSB simply lacks the resources to adequately investigate small aircraft accidents that do not involve large commercial jetliners. They are understaffed and, in some cases, under-trained, leading them to the conclusions of least resistance, rather than delving into the subtle, detailed evidence of crash dynamics.

Worst of all, nearly every manufacturer of aviation components, airplanes, helicopters, and hot air balloons now employs “go teams,” who reach plane crash sites sometimes even before the NTSB. Over the last fifteen years, the NTSB has changed its policy from one of keeping industry “go teams” away from investigations, to one of inviting them in to assist. The NTSB now relies blindly on the aviation industry’s “investigators,” who “assist” them in the official investigation. Despite the obvious conflict of interest, this is accepted practice.

For instance, in many small plane crashes, the NTSB will not pay for investigative analyses such as an engine teardown. Now, the manufacturers of aircraft powerplants offer to do such teardowns themselves, giving them the opportunity to destroy or manipulate evidence. Unsurprisingly, XYZ Airplane Widget Manufacturer, Inc. never finds any problems in its own products. Moreover, manufacturers’ representatives to NTSB investigations never identify or produce documents that will assist an official investigation if they are adverse to a manufacturer’s legal interests. Because its resources are spread too thin and its investigators are inadequately trained, the NTSB is forced to rely on the airplane, helicopter and hot air balloon manufacturers’ expertise. Essentially, the fox now guards the hen house.

In most instances, NTSB investigators will spend a day or less at smaller crash sites, quickly ship the powerplants back to their manufacturers, who claim to look into potential engine defects but unsurprisingly never find a flaw that implicates their work or designs. In the best case scenario, they will look into your aircraft or helicopter accident employing an investigation that is a mile wide, but an inch deep. Then, the NTSB can chalk an accident up to “pilot error.”

The Dane Law Firm is a boutique firm of aviators and attorneys who are passionate about flight safety and our clients’ rights. Airplane accident litigation is not your average day in court. If you have been the victim of an airplane crash or accident, you need expert New Mexico pilots, investigators, litigators, and trial lawyers like the Dane Law Firm to fight for your rights. Our New Mexico plane crash lawyers are committed to aggressively seeking justice for you by investigating the cause of your airplane accident, and retaining the best experts in the fields of aircraft crash reconstruction, metallurgy, aerodynamics, and engine and airplane design and certification. When investigating and litigating an airplane or helicopter crash, our experts use the best equipped laboratories and technologies available in the United States.

*All claims arising from or relating to airplane, helicopter, and hot air balloon crashes and accidents are subject to time limitations, within which written tort claim notices must be served upon governmental agencies, and other time limits within which suit must be filed or the claim will be forever barred. These time limits and written tort claim notices to governmental agencies vary widely depending upon a careful legal analysis which includes the location of the crash, domicile of the parties, domicile of the survivors and their families, and choice-of-law issues. Therefore, if your crash occurred some time ago, it is strongly recommended that you contact The Dane Law Firm immediately to protect your rights. Moreover, no attorney-client relationship will exist between you and The Dane Law Firm until a written engagement agreement has been fully executed by the client, personal representative, conservator, or other legally authorized client representative and the Dane Law Firm, P.C.