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Aviation disaster averted at Missouri airport

The advent of air travel allowed Missourians and other Americans to access parts of the country and the world that were previously unavailable to them. Today, air travel remains a convenient way to visit family and friends or travel for work. Unfortunately, like all forms of mass transit, airplane passengers face risks when lifting off.

Recently, a Southwest Airlines flight landed at the wrong Missouri airport, narrowly avoiding a potentially deadly crash. Instead of landing at the Branson airport, the plane landed at the Taney County airport, a facility with a much shorter runway that ends only 40 feet short of a cliff. Because of the shorter runway, the pilot was forced to brake hard, leaving a trail of burning rubber and skid marks behind. Passengers and crew were reportedly somber once realizing how close they were to going over the cliff. Fortunately, no passengers were injured. An investigation is underway to determine the cause of the mistaken landing.

Incidents such as this are a reminder of the possible deadly consequences of negligent airlines and pilots. Although air travel is relatively safe, aviation accidents can still occur. Plane crashes may occur for a variety of reasons, including pilot error, faulty equipment, regulatory violations, structural problems, air traffic controller negligence or flight service station negligence. If injured in an aviation accident, passengers may be able to file a negligence lawsuit to recover monetary compensation for their injuries. The level of compensation an injured passenger receives depends on the facts of the case and the nature of his or her injuries.

Aviation litigation can be complicated and may involve developing multiple legal theories about why the accident occurred. While complex, a negligence lawsuit can allow injured passengers to receive the compensation that they deserve from all responsible parties.

Source: Inquisitr, "Southwest Airlines plane lands at wrong Missouri airport, barely avoids crash," David Cornell, Jan. 13, 2014

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