Aviation Accidents

Austin Aviation Accident Attorneys

Zealous Representation for Victims of Aircraft Accidents & Their Loved Ones

Aviation in modern times has grown far beyond its limited origins. “Aircraft” today come in an amazing array of forms. The term obviously includes huge commercial airliners, smaller commercial “commuter” planes, and the hordes of private planes that vary considerably in size, power, and features. But “aircraft” also includes cargo planes, “ultralight” hobby planes, other gliders, helicopters, and hot air balloons of various types. These vehicles perform many different activities and require different levels of training and expertise to operate.

No matter what type of aircraft is involved, a crash or other accident can injure and kill people in the aircraft, as well as those outside it. Additionally, the list of reasons that an aircraft may have an accident is very long, indeed, as is the list of persons and companies that might bear some legal responsibility for the injuries and deaths. Further complicating the field is the fact that commercial airlines are subject to a very specific set of laws designed for that industry, while different laws apply to all other civilian aircraft. It’s a very complicated landscape, requiring someone with significant experience to really handle any claim for compensation after an accident.

At Briggle & Polan, PLLC, we have the experience and skill you need. Our Austin aviation accident attorneys are real trial lawyers with nearly 200 cases handled and millions recovered on behalf of injured individuals and their loved ones.

Contact us online or by phone at (512) 400-3278 to discuss your case. All initial consultations are free and if we don’t win your case, you won’t pay.

Federal Agencies That Oversee Aviation

There are two federal agencies assigned the job of overseeing aviation. One, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has the job of overseeing safety by developing and enforcing standards for safety and operation that apply to pilots, manufacturers, and others who oversee flight operations. The other, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has the job of investigating accidents involving civilian aircraft and, based on its experience in the investigations, recommending changes to the safety standards.

Causes of Aviation Accidents

A remarkable number of factors may cause an aviation accident. The most common include:

  • Air traffic control errors
  • Pilot error
  • Fires or explosions inside the plane
  • Mechanical failure
  • Lightning and other weather conditions
  • Design flaws
  • Damage from birds flying into the craft
  • Errors in fueling and/or preparing the aircraft for flight
  • Sabotage/terrorism

Aviation Injury & Death Statistics

While major airline crashes usually have few, if any survivors, people in other aviation accidents often do survive.

An analysis of hospital admission records covering 2000 through 2005 indicated that:

  • An estimated total of 6080 people were admitted during the 6-year period for aviation-related injuries (average of 1,013 annually)
  • The average length of stay in the hospital was 6.3 days
  • Some 2 percent of the admitted patients died without leaving the hospital
  • An estimated 753 deaths occurred each year
  • The ratio of hospitalizations to deaths was 1.3
  • Head injury was the most common factor in deaths

Most, but not all, people injured in aviation accidents are occupants of the aircraft involved.

In the analysis of aviation-related injuries described above, those who survived to the hospital were involved in:

  • Noncommercial aircraft (32 percent of the admissions)
  • Parachuting (29 percent)
  • Commercial aircraft (11 percent)
  • Unpowered aircraft (11 percent)

17 percent of hospitalized patients didn’t fall into any of those categories. These victims included ground workers, passengers, and crew injured outside the airplane.

Among victims who died:

  • 87 percent were occupants of noncommercial aircraft
  • 7 percent were commercial aircraft occupants
  • 3 percent were parachutists

Building an Aviation Case

At the beginning of any aviation accident case, there are always far more questions than answers. Who and what caused the accident? When will that even be known? What do I do while accident investigators complete their investigation? With the help of an experienced aviation accident attorney in Austin, the questions can slowly give way to answers.

If the accident involves an NTSB investigation of a commercial flight, know that you’re starting out at a disadvantage. The airline, the pilot, even the air traffic control people, will probably be part of the investigation and able to stay abreast of what’s going on. You won’t. But once the investigation is complete, there may be an opportunity to use the results to your benefit.

There are also many questions to answer about the kind of lawsuit and the amount of damages to demand. The case is different for victims who live than for victims who die, and different still for those who live for a time before dying.

Reach Out to Briggle & Polan, PLLC for a Free Consultation

If you or someone you know has been in an aviation accident, the time to reach out to an experienced attorney is now. If you have already been contacted by an insurer about the accident, the time to get help is right this minute. Our attorneys can help you start the process of sorting out who did what, who may be legally responsible for it, and the best way to proceed. We can determine who is liable for your damages, which court should hear the case, and how the federal laws on aviation and safety may affect recovery. We make every effort to settle fairly without the cost and delay of a trial, but we remain ready and very able to take the case through trial when that’s the only way to get fair compensation.

Call (512) 400-3278 or contact us online today to learn how we can help.

Hear From Our Clients

  • If you are looking for excellent and honest attorneys, call them.

    “If you are looking for excellent and honest attorneys, call them. You will not be disappointed.”

    - Paige
  • It feels good to have a team on your side that knows what they’re doing and is willing to help you against big faceless insurance companies that don’t want to pay up what they owe.

    “I found myself in a bad situation dealing with insurance adjusters that had no intention of seeing me compensated for damages their client inflicted. Parker and Hayden were positive, energetic, and ...”

    - Matt
  • I very much appreciate all their hard work and will be happy to refer to them should the need come up for friends.

    “This is the one company that would take on my case after being rejected by two other law firms. After pursuing the insurance company, they were able to get the full amount.”

    - Sandi
  • They got me the help I? needed within a few days of hiring them.

    “My settlement was awesome and I got everything I needed to get back on my feet”

    - Karina
  • These guys really helped me when no one else would.

    “They really fought for me and their paralegals were the best. They were constantly in communication with me and I would highly recommend them to anyone looking for a lawyer.”

    - Lauren

We've Recovered Millions

  • $1.8 Million Delivery Truck Accident

    Our client was t-boned by a large package delivery truck that was traveling in excess of 70 mph. He sustained a severe neck injury that required spinal surgery. *Net to client was $759,182.96.

  • $350 Thousand Company Truck Collision

    Our client was struck by a company truck that ran a red light at a busy intersection. *Net to client was $166,651.36.

  • $400 Thousand Company Truck Wreck

    Our client was traveling down a residential street when a company truck backed out of a driveway into the side of her vehicle. *Net to client was $110,000.

  • $100 Thousand DWI Wreck Resolved

    Our client was struck by a drunk driver in Round Rock, Texas. *Net to client was $51,113.04.

  • $115 Thousand Distracted Driver Caused Collision

    A distracted driver failed to yield the right of way to our client, causing a collision. *Net to client was $25,035.44.

  • $132 Thousand Distracted Driver

    Our client was the passenger in a vehicle struck by a distracted motorist who failed to yield the right of way at an intersection. *Net to client was $33,250.59.

  • $112.5 Thousand Truck Crash Into Building

    A company driver lost control of his vehicle and smashed into a convenience store, injuring our client in the process. *Net to client was $30,259.56.

  • $82 Thousand T-Bone Collision

    Our client had to be airlifted to the hospital as a result of a t-bone collision. *Net proceeds to client were $23,914.57.

  • $85 Thousand T-Bone Collision Resolved

    Our client was t-boned by a distracted driver who ran a stop sign and required surgery for injuries sustained. *Attorney fees and expenses totaled $30,267.51.

  • $225 Thousand Collision With A Distracted Driver Operating An 18-Wheeler

    Our client severely injured her back in the wreck and the driver did not have the required commercial driver's license needed to operate the truck. *Net proceeds to client were $89,737.54.

Award-Winning Legal Team Experienced Trial Attorneys That Will Fight For You In Court