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Aviation Trials and Case Construction

Aviation Trials and Case Construction

Aviation disaster litigation can be a extremely complex process. A significant number of cases do not ever need to go to trial as they are often settled or heard by an arbitrator or mediator. However, Nolan Law Group likes to prepare each case as if it will heard by and judge and or jury. A winning courtroom strategy is created during the initial discovery phase and as part of the case preparation your attorney and trial team will build a blueprint for success in court. Our team of aviation attorneys will prepare pertinent arguments, generate detailed lines of questioning, review evidence with experts and determine which to information show and how best to show it in front of a jury.

Demonstrative Evidence

The attorneys at Nolan Law Group have been pioneers in the use of demonstrative evidence during the aviation accident litigation process. When combined with expert testimony, demonstrative evidence can assist in providing the scientific verification of an accident which many judges and juries have come to demand. Ultimately, we are working to reveal the cause of an accident and build a case of culpability against the negligent parties. Utilizing evidence such as Cockpit Voice and Flight Data Recordings, Expert Testimony and detailed Accident Recreations and Animations to Illustrate Injures allows Nolan Law Group to construct winning cases.

Our Investigation Process

While the NTSB or foreign accident bodies may be investigating a case, Nolan Law Group does not wait until that process is complete. Rather, the firm initiates its own inquiry to follow and build the case. It is important to note that when the NTSB assigns probable cause to an accident, it does not assign liability and determining liability is where Nolan Law Group steps in. We build our aviation accident case separately from the NTSB and prove it in court.

Expert Testimony

After an aviation accident, there is usually a significant amount of information which needs to be collected, categorized, prioritized and processed. NTSB accident reports, engineering specifications, maintenance records, witness depositions and medical records are just some of the types of evidence which require expert legal interpretation. Nolan Law Group understands that many resources need to be brought together in order for a case to be handled successfully. Through a combination of in-house expertise and consultants (including experts who have been employed by the regulatory and investigative agencies and by the airline industry), we carefully piece together the reason for the accident.

Cockpit Voice and Flight Data Recordings

Image of cockpit voice and flight data recordersLarge commercial aircraft and some smaller commercial, corporate, and private aircraft are required by the FAA to be equipped with two “black boxes” that record information about a flight. Both recorders are installed to help reconstruct the events leading to an aircraft accident. One of these, the Cockpit Voice Recorder (CVR), records radio transmissions and sounds in the cockpit, such as the pilot’s voice and engine noises. The Flight Data Recorder (FDR) monitors parameters such as altitude, airspeed and heading. Following an accident, both recorders are immediately removed from the accident site and transported to NTSB headquarters in Washington D.C. for processing. Using sophisticated computer and audio equipment, the information stored on the recorders is extracted and translated into an understandable format. The aviation lawyers at Nolan Law Group thoroughly analyze the contents of these two pieces of equipment to determine the probable cause of the accident.

Accident Recreations

It is a fact that human beings are visual learners. Ideas communicated visually significantly increase recall rates over those conveyed in text or oral format. Success during a trial often depends on which side more effectively conveys complex arguments to a jury. Nolan Law Group has been successful at transforming confusing or complex concepts into compelling accident recreations to solidify its position. The digital age requires a new level of courtroom sophistication to successfully present an argument and get an edge on opposing counsel.

Accident re-creation: Air Philippines Flight 541

Animations to Illustrate Injuries

Attorneys in our firm have used animations on numerous occasions to illustrate how clients may have sustained an injury during an aviation accident. Showing this type of evidence allows juries to visualize an accident and better understand the forces on the body that are at work during a plane crash. The following animation shows how centrifugal force and inertia affect the brain and cervical spine during an aviation accident.

The following bio-mechanical animation shows how centrifugal force and inertia affect head and cervical spine during an aviation accident