Updated February 20, 2020

Who Investigates Aviation Accidents?

Aviation accidents are rare, but when they occur, it can be difficult to determine who is at fault and any probable causes. Several parties, including designated federal agencies, may be part of an aviation accident investigation.

With multiple examiners at play, it is crucial for you to have someone investigating the accident who is looking out for you and your personal interests. Attorneys at WKW, including two licensed pilots, can help identify the causes of the accident, determine who is at fault, and get you the compensation you deserve.

What is the National Transportation Safety Board?

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is an independent government agency that investigates every civil aviation accident in the United States. The agency additionally examines some international airline accidents, including:

  • Accidents involving United States-based airlines
  • Accidents involving airplanes that were scheduled to arrive in the United States
  • Accidents involving airplanes that departed from the United States

When an aviation accident occurs, the NTSB conducts an objective investigation, issues safety recommendations, and assists victims and their families. For major investigations, the agency sends a “go team” of technical experts to the scene of the accident. For general investigations, only one specialist might be assigned to the case.

Through its investigation, the NTSB determines the probable cause of the aviation accident, which provides important information for your legal team.

What is the Federal Aviation Administration?

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is an agency of the Department of Transportation that oversees and regulates all aspects of aviation in the United States. Among other duties, the FAA is responsible for air traffic control and sets standards for aircraft maintenance and construction as well as pilot training.

After an aviation accident, the FAA may take part in the following investigation to determine whether its regulations have been violated, be aware of safety issues, and consider necessary legal action.

Do any Other Parties investigate aviation accidents?

Depending on the context and events surrounding the aviation accident, other investigative parties may be involved.

Federal Bureau of Investigation

If the accident involves a terrorism event or national security breach, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) takes part in the examination.

Local Examiners

If the accident occurs at an airport, local fire, medical, police, or airline workers may provide assistance and be witnesses to the events following the incident.

Contact an Aviation Accident Attorney Today

Two of our attorneys at WKW are licensed pilots with a wide range of ratings and experience. Both pilots hold a commercial license, flight engineer certificate, and instrument and multi-engine aircraft ratings. Additionally, they have flight experience in Boeing 727s and many private aircraft.

If you or a loved one have been in an accident involving any type of aircraft, you are urged to contact the Indianapolis Aviation Accident Attorneys of Wilson Kehoe Winingham. The lawyers at WKW can help you get the compensation you deserve. Call 317.920.6400 or fill out an online contact form for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.

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