New York, NY—Maintenance issues aboard certain American Airlines aircraft have prompted the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to propose $1,087,500 in penalties since March 12, 2010. FAA inspections revealed the airlines failure to uphold appropriate maintenance of its jets, which posed potential aviation safety hazards to flight crewmembers and passengers, according to information provided by the Star-Telegram. While the proposed penalties are steep, American Airlines was not the only airline to face maintenance-related fees. Northwest Airlines was cited for its failure to conduct windshield wiring inspections, resulting in $1.45 million in FAA-proposed penalties, reported the Minneapolis / St. Paul business Journal.
According to federal regulators, “American maintenance workers failed to properly document a malfunctioning speed indicator on an MD-82 jet in February 2009”. Reports noted that on February 2, 2009, maintenance crews deemed the pitot tube warning light to be defective and subsequently delayed repairs in accordance with approved procedures. However, the pitot tube light was actually doing its job by attempting to warn American flight crews that the pitot tube heater itself was out of order. The American Airlines plane reportedly made a total of five trips, unbeknownst to the fact that the pitot tube heater was not working. Planes are equipped with pitot tube heaters as a means of preventing the pitot tube, which measures the aircraft’s airspeed, from becoming frozen and presenting incorrect readings. According to reports, a frozen pitot tube might have been the cause of the Air France Flight 447 crash, which resulted in 216 passenger fatalities as well as 12 crewmember deaths on June 1, 2009.
According to American Airlines spokesman Tim Smith, “Safety is a fundamental to the American Airlines culture and to our success… American is the only U.S. airline that continues to handle the majority of its heavy maintenance with in-house, FAA-certified mechanics that have met and passed all FAA experience requirements, written tests, and practical examinations.” American Airlines reported has 30 days to contest the FAA’s findings and proposed penalties.
Leading aviation accident lawyer Jonathan C. Reiter states if you or a loved one has been injured or killed due to an airline’s failure to maintain safety aboard its aircraft, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and damages. With over thirty years of experience in the field of aviation litigation, contacting the Law Firm of Jonathan C. Reiter with regard to your aviation-related claim may help you obtain the reparations you deserve.
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