Seeing your world from a different perspective in an aircraft is unlike anything else you could ever experience. Although helicopter trips are typically either work related or a fun and unique way to spend an afternoon, they can also be dangerous, even fatal. Data from the US Helicopter Safety Team (USHST) reveals Texas had the second most helicopter crashes in the country between 2007 and 2017.
People are rarely aware of their legal options when they or a loved one is involved in a helicopter crash. A good first step is to speak with an aviation accident attorney from Stepp & Sullivan since we understand the complexity of these types of claims. Our team of knowledgeable aviation accident attorneys in Texas is ready to assist you in defending your rights and tenaciously pursuing the best result.
Helicopter Accident Rates Have Been Decreasing
General Aviation News reports that fatal helicopter accidents decreased by more than 20%, while the overall accident rate per 100,000 flight hours decreased by 2.6%. According to preliminary data, there were 94 helicopter accidents in the United States overall in 2020, down from 121 the year before. In contrast to the 24 fatal accidents in 2019, there were only 19 fatal accidents in 2020.
Despite Decreasing Accident Rates, Texas Still Experiences A Number of Fatal Helicopter Accidents
In 2022, a fatal helicopter accident in Rowlett, Texas resulted in the death of its two passengers. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) led the joint investigation into the disaster with the FAA. In an update, the NTSB noted that the two fatalities involved a student pilot and a flight instructor on a training flight in a Robinson R44 helicopter.
The NTSB also reported the main rotor blade appeared to make contact with the tail boom during the flight, which may have been the cause of the tragedy. They determined that the helicopter was maneuvering at a height of about 2,000 feet when its airspeed slowed dramatically before it descended. The NTSB has not confirmed whether the crash was caused by pilot error or product failure, but they are still investigating the accident.
What are Common Causes of Helicopter Accidents in Texas?
Any step along the way, from the factory floor to the skies, could go wrong and cause a helicopter to crash. Due to their ability to fly vertically and at low altitudes, helicopters are attractive aircraft for accomplishing difficult aerial work and leisure activities. They are also highly complex devices that require advanced training and maintenance.
Helicopter accidents can happen in various situations, including pilot training, tourist trips, and hired flights. Due to their unique qualities, investigating a helicopter accident typically entails a more thorough investigation of the accident’s causes.
Numerous factors can result in helicopter accidents, including the following:
- Defective parts or design
- Electrical and mechanical malfunctions
- Flying in unsafe weather conditions
- Inadequate helicopter pilot training
- Misunderstanding the helicopter’s limits
- Poor helicopter maintenance
The NTSB investigates all aviation accidents and determines the crash’s most likely cause. However, the NTSB does not attribute fault to anyone who might have caused the accident. When seeking compensation for a helicopter accident, it is in your best interest to retain a legal team with access to resources and trustworthy experts to identify your accident’s cause and the parties at fault. Don’t immediately think that the NTSP will find the cause of the crash.
Retain an Aviation Lawyer With Decades of Experience and Industry Insight
Texas’s open skies provide ample room for private helicopter trips. Though private aircraft can crash due to various factors, the numerous checks and balances involved in flying are designed to reduce the probability of accidents. When any of these measures are neglected, the party responsible should be held liable for the accident and any resulting losses.
At Stepp & Sullivan, we are adept in handling Texas aircraft accident cases and securing accident victims the compensation they deserve. With more than 40 years of combined experience, we have an in-depth understanding of the complexity involved in aviation accident claims. Our clients have benefited from our skills as we strive to assist in defending their rights and tenaciously pursuing the best result. Contact our firm at (713) 336-7200 or by filling out our contact form.