This doesn't make sense to me.....

ed207063

New Member
This doesn\'t make sense to me.....

An article in my local paper today says that the family of Governor Mel Carnahan of Missouri, who along with his son was killed in a 2000 crash, has been awarded $4 million dollars by a jury who found an airplane parts manufacturer negligent.

The part that confuses me is that the family argued that "a pair of vacuum pumps ..... failed, causing the plane to crash."

Now, my experience with airplane systems is limited, but can someone explain how a vacuum failure can directly cause a crash? I can understand being in IMC, losing your attitude indicator, spatial disorientation, and all, but the article seemed to imply a direct connection between the pump failure and the crash.
 

drummerboy

Well-Known Member
Re: This doesn\'t make sense to me.....

I'd have to get all the details, but isn't this exactly why a normal part of our training is partial panel? The main reason it is practiced is for a vaccum pump failure and then you would pretty much have to be in IMC for it to be a problem.
 

Derg

New Arizona, Il Duce/Warlord
Staff member
Re: This doesn\'t make sense to me.....

Needless to say, lawsuits as such are why GA is dying.
 

DE727UPS

Well-Known Member
Re: This doesn\'t make sense to me.....

Ever wonder why flying is so expensive? Liability insurance because of these sorts of lawsuits do a lot of damage to the industry...these sort of suits happen all the time. Yeah, we are trained on partial panel and he should have been able to control the plane.

I've heard the demands on vaccum pumps on twin Cessna's is high do to the need to run the deice boots. All the more reason to have an electrical back up to keep the wings level and low vacuum annunciator lights to warn you of the failure.
 

SUSPilot

Well-Known Member
Re: This doesn\'t make sense to me.....

This whole story really bothers me. Randy Carnahan a pilot who was NOT Instrument current took off into low IFR conditions. There have been reports that they had been having trouble with the pilot side Attitude Indicator before this flight, there was a full set of instruments on the co-pilot side and Gov. Mel Carnahan, who was instrument rated and current was sitting in the back of the plane. The NTSB found the vaccum pumps in a condition that leads them to believe they were working at the time of the accident. Randy Carnahan was trying to fly the plane off of copilot instruments and became disoriented. Only in America would someone get money because they screwed up.
 

kellwolf

Piece of Trash
Re: This doesn\'t make sense to me.....

Um, why didn't this guy follow standard procedure and cover up his AI and HI? Seems like his altimeter, ASI and compass were working just fine. I'd rather do that than crane my neck looking at another AI, risk getting fixated on it, and entering a spin or cross-controlled stall.
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
Re: This doesn\'t make sense to me.....

[ QUOTE ]
This whole story really bothers me. Randy Carnahan a pilot who was NOT Instrument current took off into low IFR conditions. There have been reports that they had been having trouble with the pilot side Attitude Indicator before this flight, there was a full set of instruments on the co-pilot side and Gov. Mel Carnahan, who was instrument rated and current was sitting in the back of the plane. The NTSB found the vaccum pumps in a condition that leads them to believe they were working at the time of the accident. Randy Carnahan was trying to fly the plane off of copilot instruments and became disoriented. Only in America would someone get money because they screwed up.

[/ QUOTE ]

C'mon now, we all know Cessna/Beechcraft/Gulfstream, etc, are the "deep pockets", hell they must have been responsible for the accident in some way!


Reminds me of the guy who's non-instrument rated, who takes a Cessna 172 into IMC and ends up a smoking hole in the ground following spatial-D, and Cessna is somehow at fault! Forget personal responsibility for actions anymore.

What really pisses me off, is if we can't get away from BS lawsuits like these, then we better just apply them across the board.......next time a drunk drives DUI and kills a couple people, why not sue Ford/GM/Toyota for having built the car in the first place? Same mentality is happening with kids that get killed accidentally by a handgun....somehow, Smith and Wesson is responsible for having made the thing in the first place; accident wouldn't have happened had they not produced it.
 

donttouchanything

New Member
Re: This doesn\'t make sense to me.....

We are living in a society where “victimhood” and celebrity are equally venerated. Somebody’s always got to be at fault (except the victim). Personal responsibility is pretty much dead on arrival (of the attorneys).

There will always be someone trying to extort money from companies until we get real tort reform in this country, which will happen shortly after never.
 

BobDDuck

Island Bus Driver
Re: This doesn\'t make sense to me.....

[ QUOTE ]
Same mentality is happening with kids that get killed accidentally by a handgun....somehow, Smith and Wesson is responsible for having made the thing in the first place; accident wouldn't have happened had they not produced it.

[/ QUOTE ]

I don't want to start a civil right's discussion because this is neither the time nor the place (not squawkbox) and I am one of those strange people, that while I am for gun control and all that I support everyone else’s right to not be (go figure... I know it makes no sense.) ANYHOW.... The problem with including gun makers in the list of companies being unfairly sued is that guns are in fact designed to kill people. Cars and Cessnas aren't. However, I pretty much agree with you in the sense that the people operating the things should be held responsible because it is their stupidity that got them drunk/left the loaded gun in their 1 year olds crib etc.
Ethan
 

John_Jones

New Member
Re: This doesn\'t make sense to me.....

[ QUOTE ]
We are living in a society where “victimhood” and celebrity are equally venerated. Somebody’s always got to be at fault (except the victim). Personal responsibility is pretty much dead on arrival (of the attorneys).

[/ QUOTE ]
Thats so true...
 

ed207063

New Member
Re: This doesn\'t make sense to me.....

"C'mon now, we all know Cessna/Beechcraft/Gulfstream, etc, are the "deep pockets", hell they must have been responsible for the accident in some way!"

The thing is, the jury held the manufacturer of the vacuum pumps liable, not Cessna. How do these juries arrive at these conclusions?

This whole tort law thing is so out of control. I work in a profession that can get sued at the drop of a hat, and often does. I am ALWAYS paranoid that some lawyer will find fault in SOMETHING that I did....boom.....lawsuit. It stinks.
 

FL270

New Member
Re: This doesn\'t make sense to me.....

This is why we desperately need tort reform in this country. Trial lawyers complain about it, but lawsuits are killing GA, to say nothing of skyrocketing costs for health care and all kinds of other things.

FL270
 
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