Helicopter Accident

Serving Daytona, Deltona and Palm Coast

(updated 2/22/2017)

Helicopters are extremely useful vehicles that can be employed in a variety of situations, including military applications, news reporting, private transportation, and emergency medical transport among others. Part of their versatility, comes from the helicopter’s ability to perform maneuvers that other types of aircraft cannot; for example, they are able to take off and land vertically, hover in one place, and do not need to maintain a certain airspeed to stay aloft. 

These same characteristics make helicopters extremely complicated machines that require highly specialized training to fly. When helicopters are involved in accidents that are the result of someone’s negligence, victims may be able to recover by bringing a personal injury claim against the responsible party or parties. The best way to ensure that you get the compensation to which you are entitled after a helicopter accident is to retain an experienced personal injury attorney immediately.

Common Causes of Helicopter Accidents

There are many ways that a helicopter accident could occur, as well as several different parties who could potentially be responsible. Some of the more common causes of helicopter accidents include the following:

  • Pilot error – Human error accounts for a significant number of helicopter accidents each year. There are many ways that a pilot could make a mistake, including issues such as failing to account for poor weather or simply misjudging the difficulty or advisability of performing a certain maneuver. Depending on the circumstances, these types of mistakes could entitle victims to significant financial recovery.
  • Defective helicopter design or manufacture – Helicopters are extremely complicated pieces of machinery, and literally have thousands of components that have the potential to fail. If a helicopter or a piece of helicopter equipment fails because it was poorly designed or manufactured, victims may be able to recover for their losses.
  • Inadequate maintenance – Like any other modern vehicle, helicopters must be adequately maintained in order to be safely operated. The companies and individuals who own helicopters have a duty to ensure that their vehicles are properly maintained. Unfortunately, this does not always occur, sometimes with disastrous results.
  • 3rd party negligence – In certain cases, a 3rd party could potentially be liable for a helicopter crash. For example, if a person in the helicopter was unreasonably distracting the pilot, or the negligence of another pilot resulted in a mid-air collision, the 3rd party liability could result.

Common Carrier Liability

Florida law considers companies or individuals who are in the business of transporting goods or people, and who hold their services out to the general public, to be “common carriers.” Common carriers are subject to federal and state regulations, and are also held to a higher standard of care than others who are not common carriers. In Florida, a common carrier is required to use the highest degree of care that is consistent with the type of transportation used, and the practical operation of the business of a common carrier of passengers. 

Any departure from this “very careful” standard could be the basis for liability, as could any non-compliance with federal and state regulations. The best way to ensure that you get the compensation, to which you are entitled is to discuss your case with a personal injury lawyer. You can call us at (386) 777-7777 or fill out our online contact form below for a free case evaluation.

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