No one wants to get into any type of accident, but helicopter accidents and crashes can be some of the worst. After an injury sustain in an accident, you might struggle to determine if you are owed restitution because of the accident. If you or a loved one has been recently injured in a helicopter crash, check out these four commonly asked questions.
1. Where You Injured From the Accident?
If you were lucky enough to be completely uninjured and unaffected by the accident, you probably don’t need and won’t get a settlement. However, injuries don’t just include broken bones; they include physical hard/soft tissue damage and mental injuries, such as depression or PTSD from the incident.
Even if you weren’t physically injured, if your attorney can prove mental pain and suffering, you may receive some money.
Soft tissue injures include sprains and pain in muscles, connective tissues: everything except bones. Broken bones or damage to bones is considered a hard injury, and hard injuries usually provide higher settlements because the damage is more severe and may be long lasting, such as paralysis from breaking your back in the accident or mental impairment from a head injury.
2. Did Someone Make a Mistake?
If someone made a mistake that caused the accident, your attorney will fight to prove that person caused the accident and is fully responsible for your injuries. For the most part, these types of mistakes come from pilots or air traffic controllers.
Pilots may make mistakes because of stress, illness, alcohol, fatigue and many other reasons. Similarly, if the pilot was flying recklessly (doing tricks, etc.), they may be held responsible. Air traffic controllers may also make mistakes from stress or fatigue, but in some cases, the error was due to a software malfunction.
3. Was There a Defected Design or Product?
In some cases, a person didn’t caused the accident; rather a defect is responsible. Defects in designs of how the helicopter was crafted can lead to problems, but so can defects in various products used to build the helicopter or use the helicopter.
If the helicopter had a defect, who do you sue? You can actually seek restitution from everyone involved in the design or manufacturing process. For example, if the pilot’s headpiece stopped working (from a defect) and they couldn’t hear ground control, you can sue the manufacturer of the headpiece and the company that sold it (if different). Speak to a lawyer about your options.
4. Was the Helicopter Properly Maintained?
Just like your vehicle, helicopters need excellent maintenance. Neglecting to do perform maintenance negatively impacts how well the helicopter works. This can lead to major complications and crashes. These repairs can be costly and time consuming, which is why many helicopter owners may neglect their machine.
If your attorney can prove the crash was caused because the helicopter wasn’t properly maintained, you may be able to sue whoever was responsible for maintenance. In the case of a private helicopter owner, the owner or pilot are responsible.
If the business owns the helicopter, you may have to go after them. Finally, in some cases, the company or owner may have sent the helicopter for frequent maintenance, but the maintenance technician did a poor job at keeping the system well maintained. If this is the case, the technician or the company for which the technician works may be sued.
If someone was responsible for your accident and injuries, you are probably due some kind of settlement. However, you shouldn’t have to worry about filing claims or talking to insurance carriers. Instead, focus on healing and recovery, while you let the professional team at St. Martin and Bourque Attorneys at Law help. For more information, contact us today.