After Visiting Ethiopian Airlines Crash Site, Beasley Allen Lawyer Sues Boeing

“The 346 lives that were sacrificed on the two doomed Boeing MAX flights will never return home, and they didn’t have a chance to survive despite pilots’ brave efforts,” said Mike Andrews of Beasley Allen. “They deserve justice by holding Boeing accountable.”

“The 346 lives that were sacrificed on the two doomed Boeing MAX flights will never return home, and they didn’t have a chance to survive despite pilots’ brave efforts,” said Mike Andrews of Beasley Allen. “They deserve justice by holding Boeing accountable.”

The family of a passenger killed in the Ethiopian Airlines crash earlier this year, represented by the Beasley Allen Law Firm of Atlanta and Montgomery, Alabama, filed a lawsuit against the Boeing Co. Thursday alleging negligence over its 737 MAX aircraft.

“This action arises from the horrific crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight302 (“Flight 302”) on March 10, 2019 in which 157 people lost their lives,” said the complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois Eastern Division on behalf of Sara Yakob, the widow of Getnet Alemayehu, a passenger killed on that flight.

“The aircraft involved in Flight 302 was a Boeing 737 MAX 8,” the complaint said. “This crash came less than five months after Lion Air Flight JT 610—another Boeing 737 MAX 8—crashed into the Java Sea on October 29, 2018, killing all 189 on board.”

The complaint noted that investigation of both crashes continues. The 737 MAX has been grounded since the second crash.

“Boeing extends our heartfelt condolences and sympathies to the families and loved ones of those on board Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302,” corporate spokesman Peter Pedraza said Friday. “As the investigation continues, Boeing is cooperating fully with the investigating authorities.”

“We won’t comment on this lawsuit directly,” Pedraza added.

“The similarities in the aircraft and the investigative findings for the crashes thus far point to a common cause,” the complaint said. “Shortly after taking off and while attempting to climb, pilots for both aircraft reported flight control issues as the planes pitched up and down erratically throughout the sky.”

The complaint said flight paths and data released thus far for both aircraft show that the “pilots were engaged in a terrifying tug-of-war with the plane’s automated systems as the pilots manually tried to climb while the computer system repeatedly caused the plane to dive with increasing nose-down trim against the pilot inputs.”

The complaint said pilots of both planes “lost their fight with Boeing’s flight computer, and hundreds of passengers and crew lost their lives due to Boeing’s flight computer driving the airplanes into the ground.”

The family is represented by Beasley Allen’s Mike Andrews, who focuses much of his practice on complex aviation litigation, along with Adam Ramji of the Ramji Law Group in Houston.

In preparing the lawsuit, members of the family’s legal team traveled to Ethiopia, then rode several hours to the scene of the crash. Andrews described it as a 45-foot crater—large enough to hold a three-story building—in Tulu Fara village near Bishoftu, Ethiopia. He said only fragments of the plane remain, along with personal belongings of the passengers. He said the aircraft “throttled into the ground at nearly 600 miles per hour.” He said an armed guard escorted him to the site. He collected some of the aircraft’s fragments for later inspection.

“Visiting the site of a crash was surreal,” Andrews said. “Seeing the personal items that had been carefully packed away for travel just weeks earlier lay strewn on the ground and mangled together with pieces from the aircraft was overwhelming — especially when we know this crash did not have to happen.”

The lawsuit alleged the company knew about the glitch and failed to fix it.

“The 346 lives that were sacrificed on the two doomed Boeing MAX flights will never return home, and they didn’t have a chance to survive despite pilots’ brave efforts,” Andrews said. “But Boeing had numerous chances to make the aircraft safer, and time and again it chose to protect its bottom line rather than the air travelers who trusted the company. They deserve justice by holding Boeing accountable.”

Beasley Allen is a plaintiffs firm with 80 attorneys and 200 support staff with reported verdicts and settlements in excess of $26 billion. The firm has handled litigation over defective General Motors ignition switches, Takata’s exploding airbags, Gulf Coast states devastated by the BP oil spill, drugs and medical devices, Johnson & Johnson’s talcum powder, predatory lending and VW emissions software.

1 COMMENT

  1. I told you! I told you a million times!!! Here is something every one of us should remember. When snafu happens with very bad consequences it is in all manufacturers’ innate reaction to blame the victims first. You remember the GM’s screw-up with its wobbling Corvair in the 1960’s? How about the DC-10 disaster of the 1970’s? How about the runaway cars of the Toyota’s and Lexus’s of our time? In all of these cases the manufacturers were hell bent in blaming the victims including those who died due to defective mfg. But in all those previous cases the stake was not as higher than as it is with this disaster. This one carries more than $500 billion US dollars on its plate with open orders. That is why you see hirelings of all kinds running rabid blaming those well qualified pilots. It is a shame to see even an elected official coming into the fray blaming those 3rd world country ‘niggaz’ for the disaster just because they are genetically disposed not to learn and retain modern technology. Suddenly EAL doesn’t know how to train its pilots even with its impeccable safety history of more than 70 years. How many disasters did EAL have during those years? How many? If you start counting them using your fingers you will not use up the fingers in your one hand. EAL should not sit back and take the crap from such hirelings.

    The most vexing excuse to me is this manufacturer’s copout that the most effective safety feature of the model was available at additional cost and EAL chose not to buy it. Hello, is somebody upstairs neck up? That is where young generation of our time goes ‘duhhhh!!!’ To me this is not just a case of innocent mistake but something bordering on a criminal act. Someone down the assembly line must somehow have known or seen something was not right on these two planes in particular. This is a nastily charged up environment and the customers may not have access to the process when their particular planes were assembled. Way to go Beasely-Allen!!!

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