Tragically, a Medevac helicopter crashed on September 27, 2008 killing 4 people and injuring others. Those killed include Stephen Bunker, Mickey Lippy, Tanya Mallard and Ashley Younger. Jordan Wells was a passenger who survived the crash. The safety board has released hundreds of pages of information about the crash in anticipation of an upcoming hearing on the matter.
The facts surrounding why this crash occurred are now coming to light. It appears that the pilot was given old information-an aged weather report-instead of the fresh information that he should have been given. Guidelines call for state police-run helicopters not to initiate flights at night when the cloud ceiling is less than 800 feet above ground level. The controller who relayed the information told investigators that the weather report is supposed to automatically update. This controller, Mr. Kendall Young, has been assigned to administrative duties during the crash investigation. As it now is apparent that this crash never should have occurred in the first place, it will be interesting to see if the Maryland Legislature addresses this issue at the upcoming Legislative session in Annapolis, Maryland.
Relatives of those involved in the crash need to act promptly to preserve their negligence claims, product liability claims, and workman’s compensation claims. Since governmental agencies are involved, issues of sovereign immunity may apply that require notice to be formally given to the State of Maryland and/or Local Governments (e.g. Prince George’s County/Charles County) regarding claims for unliquidated damages. It is important that those injured and the families of those killed in this crash hire an attorney as soon as possible. Our personal injury attorneys in Silver Spring would be glad to help and can be reached at (888) 213-8140.