One year, that's how long officials say it could take to close the investigation into the crash of two small planes at West Georgia Regional Airport this week in Carroll County. Three people are dead as a result.
That is a long time to wait if you are seeking closure after the loss of a loved one. Emotions and grief are strong after such incidents and the inability to get answers to nagging questions adds to the distress. No amount of money can make up for such a loss, but seeking compensation for wrongful death is one way our legal system provides for holding negligent parties responsible for their actions.
According to news reports, wreckage of the two planes is already gone from the site. Investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board will try to determine what happened based on forensic examination of the debris and any other evidence available.
What officials are confirming at this point is that there are three victims. They identify one as a 79-year-old former Federal Aviation Administration employee from College Park. He was flying solo in one of the single-engine planes. The other was carrying a 24-year-old female instructor for a local flying school and a 20-year-old student from China. Witnesses reported that the planes both appeared to be trying to land at the same time and collided on approach.
It's worth noting that the landing strip where this occurred is uncontrolled. FAA rules are that pilots that use such facilities have to exercise particular care to avoid disasters.
From a legal perspective, questions that deserve answers include:
- Which plane had the right of way?
- Did the elderly solo pilot suffer a medical emergency that contributed to the crash?
- Should he have been flying at all?
- Who was at the wheel of the flight school plane?
- Does the flight school bear any liability for what happened?
Experienced attorneys are in the position to pursue the answers on behalf of loved ones.