Pilatus Aircraft Sued For 2009 Accident
Widow Of The Pilot Says Company Is Partly To Blame For The Butte Crash
Pilatus is being sued by the widow of a pilot who was flying a PC-12/45 which went down near Butte, MT, fatally injuring all 14 people on board. Janet Summerfield has also sued Martin Aviation Inc., in connection with the case.
The NTSB found that pilot error was the probable cause for the accident, but the Board's findings are not admissible as evidence in court.
The Billings Gazette reports that the complaint, filed in Butte district court, alleges that the airplane had a "defective fuel system" and other factors that made it "unreasonably dangerous." Martin Aviation in Santa Ana, CA is being sued for failing to properly maintain the airplane. Flight originated in California, and was enroute to Bozeman, MT, when the accident occurred.
The probable cause report indicated that the plane was overloaded and became unbalanced during the flight. It went down on approach to Butte airport.
The amount of the lawsuit was not specified.
Source: March 25, 2012 (co.silverbow.mt.us)
Photo: Pilatus PC-12/45 Aircraft (Photo by © Mark Kryst-XYU Photo / Airliners.net)