Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Are airlines liable for injuries related to turbulence?

The car isn't the only place you should wear your seat-belt all the time.

Injuries on airline flights due to turbulence aren't unheard of, ranging from broken bones to spinal damage.

Most people who sustain injury are not wearing their seat-belts. According to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), about 60 passengers are injured during turbulence every year because they ignored the seat-belt sign.

Source : http://zacharassociates.com
In general, a carrier cannot be held liable for turbulence because it isn't always predictable.
Often, turbulence can be predicted, and the flight crew will take measures (verbal warnings and instruction, securing food carts and other loose objects, activating the “fasten

seat-belt” sign) to protect its passengers. If injured while wearing a seat-belt, or while ignoring the warning of the flight crew, it is unlikely that the airline could be held liable for the injury. On the other hand, if a passenger is injured by luggage that flew

from an unlatched overhead bin, the airline could be held liable for the injury if they failed to secure the bin.

Likewise, if it can be proven that the flight crew knew about turbulent conditions and failed to notify passengers, they could be held liable for any injuries caused by the lack of communication.

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