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USA Today – “Lawsuits Loom for Southwest in Flight 1380 Tragedy”

Apr 20, 2018 | Crashes

Engine Parts 1380

Engine debris from Flight 1380 found in a Pennsylvania field.

(April 20, 2018)
Katzman Lampert & Stoll has filed suit in Philadelphia on behalf of numerous SWA 1380 Victims.

Litigation has goals far beyond compensation of accident victims. Where manufacturers and regulatory agencies have abrogated their responsibilities for safety, focused lawsuits can shine a light on overlooked deficiencies in aviation safety.

According to an article in USA Today, passengers who were aboard Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 when an engine exploded could stand to collect “tens of millions’ in legal damages.

David Katzman, senior partner here at Katzman Lampert & Stoll, was quoted in the article regarding the engine failure…

David Katzman, a pilot and aviation lawyer whose firm includes an office in Philadelphia, said the engine inspections will be a crucial component in determining what went wrong. The NTSB has focused on metal fatigue on a fan blade that broke in the engine.

Last year, Southwest Airlines opposed a recommendation by the engine manufacturer to require ultrasonic inspections of fan blades in the engines within 12 months, saying it needed more time to do the work.

Katzman says the blade would have started cracking, then would have taken time to break off. He wondered aloud how many times the plane flew after the initial crack.

“We have been dealing with metal fatigue since the Copper Age,” Katzman said. “Fatigue starts with a crack and propagates. It takes time, it begins to fail, then it fails.”

While it will take some time to determine all of the factors involved in the tragic incident, much about the cause came to light almost immediately. Katzman Lampert & Stoll partner Bradley Stoll has written a detailed article about the specific Flight 1380 engine failure, stress cracks, and metal fatigue in the fan blades. The photo above shows pieces of the engine that were located in a Pennsylvania field.

5 Reasons to Choose KLS

Hundreds of Millions Obtained on Behalf of Our Clients
Here are a few examples of recent verdicts and judgments from jury trials we have conducted: twelve million three hundred thirty three thousand five hundred dollars ($12,333,500.00) arising from a trial in Texas in Hanak v DynCorp, involving a crash due to faulty maintenance of a U.S. Army Blackhawk helicopter in Italy; fourteen million fourteen thousand five hundred and 16/100 dollars ($14,014,500.16) from a trial we conducted in Maryland, in Parsons, et al. v. Midwest Air Traffic Control Services Inc., et al. involving a midair collision; and, fifty four million dollars ($54,000,000.00) involving the crash of a Boeing 747-400 aircraft in Bagram, Afghanistan, as noted above. This is a sampling, as we have been taking cases to trial for many, many, years.

Successful Litigators
We have a long history of successful adversarial litigation with Boeing. Our cases against Boeing in particular, and specifically with regard to design problems in its 737 aircraft, include the representation of many clients reaching back to the crash of United Airlines flight 585, in Colorado Springs, Colorado, on March 1, 1991, and the crash of USAir flight 427 while on approach to land at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on September 8, 1994. Both of those crashes involved a single-point design failure that caused a rudder reversal, leading to crashes of both 737 aircraft. In the lawsuits arising from both of those crashes, our firm was appointed by the federal courts to the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee, to lead the litigation.
We also represented several clients and served on the Steering Committee arising from the crash of TWA flight 800 on July 17, 1996. That case involved a design defect in the center fuel tank of a 747 aircraft, leaving it susceptible to explosion from spontaneous combustion.
More recently we have litigated with Boeing on product liability and negligence claims involving the 747-400 crash of National Airlines flight 102 at Bagram Airport, Afghanistan, on April 29, 2013. That crash involved improper loading and restraint of military cargo.

Over 5 Decades Representing the People in Aviation Law Cases
In these past fifty-one years we have handled cases ranging from design and manufacturing defects to pilot error and improper maintenance, involving most of the aircraft types, makes, and models certificated in general aviation and transport category aircraft by the Federal Aviation Administration. We have handled cases from trial through appeals up to and including the United States Supreme Court. First and foremost, we are trial lawyers.

Expertise in All Facets of Aviation Law
Our firm employs several consultants, including pilots, aerodynamic engineers, mechanical engineers and materials engineers, who we regularly retain and deploy when investigating and litigating the causes of aviation accidents. In addition, we employ economists and certified public accountants for modeling and projecting economic losses.

Trained and Experienced Pilots
Our firm was founded in 1968 and since its inception has practiced virtually exclusively in aviation law involving product liability and negligence claims causing personal injury and wrongful death. The partners in the firm are pilots. David Katzman holds an Airline Transport Pilot certificate (the highest pilot certification issued by the Federal Aviation Administration), and is “type rated” and thus qualified to act as pilot-in-command and to instruct others in several transport category jet aircraft. Bruce A. Lampert is a multi-engine - instrument rated pilot

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