An Accident at an Air Force Base

When you believe that a party acted negligently and is responsible for a loved one’s death, the law permits you to turn toward wrongful death litigation as a judicial remedy for such neglectful behavior.

An Airshow Stunt Gone Wrong

A recent post from the Sacramento Bee details a family that is suing on behalf of a veteran stunt pilot who died during an airshow at Travis Air Base. Mr. Andreini died at 77 at the Travis Air Force Base after attempting to execute an upside-down pass over the runway. The family is seeking $20 million from the federal government and alleges that the emergency crews did not respond quickly after the airplane became engulfed in flames. There are three wrongful death claims from the family; one Mr. Andreini’s wife, and one from each of his two children.

Investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board produced a report, affirming that it took emergency fire crews between three and four minutes to respond to the accident. The family attorney has asserted that Air Force regulations require emergency vehicles to be capable of responding to an emergency matter within 60 seconds. Additionally, there are spectators and a photographer who criticized what they deemed to be a slow response to the tragic event. They assert that almost five minutes passed between the airplane crash and the arrival of the emergency crews. One witness went as far as to state that Mr. Andreini should be in the hospital with second-degree burns and smoke inhalation, rather than at the coroner’s office. The family believes that the death of Mr. Andreini was the direct result of the alleged slow response time of the emergency crew. The family attorney stated that the stunt pilot was uninjured when the airplane came to a rest and that crew members and his fellow pilots heard him over the radio stating that he was in decent condition, but trapped inside the aircraft and needed help to exit.

What should I know about wrongful death litigation?

The first thing to know about wrongful death litigation is that it can sometimes be a protracted affair, in which years pass before you win a case. Even when there is a settlement between two parties, it may still take time to come to an agreement. Additionally, it is important to understand the rationale behind wrongful death litigation: giving the ability of loved ones, generally family members, to seek compensation for their loss. And while matters such as financial dependance play a role in financial compensation, a judicial remedy always tries to include the loss of emotional support. If financial support were the only metric that courts used to determine financial awards for wrongful death litigation, then financially independent adults who lost their parents would not be able to bring forward a claim.

Matters concerning wrongful death litigation are complex. If you have any questions, you should contact the Appel Law Firm LLP. We are prepared to help you acquire the compensation you deserve due to the death of your loved one.

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