Agencies That Play a Role in Alaska Aviation Accidents

You have probably heard the rumor that airline travel is among the safest forms of transportation in the US, and this claim is actually true: Statistics indicate that there are 138 fatalities related to commercial and private airplane accidents every year, based upon a five-year average. In contrast, more than 36,600 people die every year in motor vehicle crashes. The chance of being killed in an aviation collision is 1 in 2.067 million, compared to 1 in 7,700 for auto collisions.

Though rare overall, there are factors that make airplane accidents more likely in Alaska. For one, much of the state is only accessible by air or water, including the capital, Juneau. Plus, when it comes to air travel, the weather in Alaska is always a concern.

Still, these factors do not excuse negligence by pilots, aviation companies, and tour operators. These parties are regulated by government agencies, which thoroughly investigate fatal and injury-causing incidents. Your Anchorage airplane accident attorney will handle details, since you may need to coordinate with these agencies after a crash.


National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)

This agency is tasked with investigating a wide range of accidents, including those involving trains, buses, commercial airlines, and private aviation companies. If you are involved in an air-related crash, the NTSB conducts a probe into the underlying causes and contributing factors. However, what this agency does with the information is intended to serve societal objectives – protecting the public and preventing future airplane accidents. NTSB does not support the interests of individual victims.

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)

The role of the FAA is distinct from the NTSB in two ways:

  • The reach of NTSB is broad to cover a range of transportation-related collisions. The FAA specifically focuses on air travel.
  • The NTSB enters the picture after a plane crash. The FAA is responsible for safety in all aspects of aviation, from licensing pilots and managing air traffic to helping develop systems, devices, and equipment.

In addition, the FAA has an enforcement division that works to ensure compliance with the agency’s aviation regulations. A pilot, air carrier, or other company could be subject to penalties for rules violations – regardless of whether they lead to an accident.


Proving an Airplane Accident Claim

The efforts of the NTSB and FAA are intended to serve public safety needs, but the results of their investigations may be useful in individual cases. The reports of these agencies are public record, so a history of crashes or violations could be useful proof in a subsequent airplane accident case. The key is having sufficient evidence to show that the at-fault party breached the duty to exercise reasonable care, and this breach caused the collision.


An Alaska Airplane Accidents Lawyer Can Explain Additional Details

You may qualify to recover for medical costs, pain and suffering, and other losses after an aviation accident, so trust Power & Power Law to tackle the legal process. You can call 907-222-9990 or go online to schedule a free consultation at our Anchorage offices.