Noteworthy Cases

AIR CRASH DISASTER

AMERICAN AIRLINES FLIGHT 587

On November 12, 2001 American Airlines flight 587, an Airbus A300 with 251 passengers aboard en route to Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, crashed shortly after take off into Belle Harbor, a residential New York City neighborhood several miles from JFK Airport. All souls aboard were lost as were five people on the ground. Flightinjury.com attorney Abram I. Bohrer was retained by a number of the families and survivors of those lost to represent them in a wrongful death action against both American Airlines and Airbus, the aircraft manufacturer.

Since this was an international flight, Mr. Bohrer brought suit in federal court under the  Montreal Convention as well as product liability law and determined, in conjunction with the NTSB, FAA and plaintiff's steering committees, that the  plane's vertical stabilizer and rudder separated in flight and fell into Jamaica Bay due to both pilot error and a product defect.

Mr. Bohrer was able to successfully resolve each of the cases on behalf of his clients for confidential amounts that left the survivors financially able to carry on with their lives despite the tragic and irreplaceable loss of their loved ones.

 

IN FLIGHT ACCIDENTS

Turbulence

Magan v. Lufthansa

Our client was a successful American entrepreneur flying to Europe for high level meetings with government officials when a regional jet that he was traveling aboard encountered significant turbulence over Eastern Europe. He was thrown into the ceiling of the aircraft and suffered major neurological injuries.

The airline refused to acknowledge its liability to the passenger and we filed suit in federal court under the (Warsaw) now Montreal Convention governing international air travel.  In a landmark decision and major victory for airline passengers following argument before the United Stares Second Circuit Court of Appeals, the Court held that whether turbulence constitutes an accident is a fact-specific inquiry that should be evaluated on a case -by-case basis and reversed a trial court's ruling that only severe turbulence can be considered an accident under the (Warsaw) Montreal Convention. Magan v. Lufthansa German Airlines, 339 F.3d 158 (2d Cir. 2003) Abram Bohrer then took the case to trial before a jury and won a significant award for our client.

O v. KAL

We represented Ms. O v. KAL where as a result of turbulence, the passenger suffered  major injuries that required surgical repairs and left her with permanent hardware in her ankle. The airline initially denied that the accident was due to turbulence. After taking depositions of many of the flight crew, Mr. Bohrer was able to reach a confidential resolution of the action.

In the matter of Ahlstrom:

Mr. Bohrer was able to win a significant award on behalf of a member of the Swedish National Swim Team whose career ended after his transatlantic flight unexpectedly encountered turbulence and he was propelled into the ceiling of the aircraft.

 

BOARDING/DISEMBARKING ACCIDENTS:

S. v. Continental

Mr. Bohrer recently resolved a lawsuit on behalf of a New Jersey woman who was severely injured after she fell on a wet and slippery floor while boarding a Continental Airlines flight from Montego Bay Jamaica to Newark's Liberty Airport. As a result of the fall, the client required the services of an air ambulance to return to the United States where she underwent multiple surgeries to treat her injuries.

During our investigation we learned that the airport's roof had been defective and leaking for years, with little or nothing done to make it safer for passengers. The airline contended that it was not liable since the accident occurred in an airport that was entirely owned and controlled by a foreign entity that was not subject to jurisdiction in the United States.  

We filed suit in federal court under the Montreal Convention and achieved a confidential settlement on behalf of the passenger.

Jones v. ITS and US AIRWAYS

Despite both the carrier and its "sky cap" company being in bankruptcy, Mr. Bohrer obtained a significant monetary award for a Tennessee special handling passenger who was essentially abandoned after landing in New York's LaGuardia aircraft. Despite wearing a sticker that mandated special attention, Ms. Jones was left with her luggage at the top of escalator by a careless "sky cap" who drove away as Ms. and her luggage toppled down nearly the entire escalator. She was left with debilitating permanent injuries and walks with a permanent limp.

This outrageous conduct caused a US Bankruptcy judge to lift the bankruptcy stay against the company and ordered the sky cap company to compensate our client for her in injuries.

 

TARMAC BUS ACCIDENTS

I. vs. Lufthansa

Our client was a New York resident and passenger aboard a bus transporting her from an aircraft to the terminal at Munich Airport when it was involved in a crash that resulted in our clients suffering multiple injuries. Despite the accident's occurrence at a foreign airport, we were able to file suit in federal court and win a significant monetary award on her behalf.

B. vs. Alitalia

Mrs. B, an elderly New Jersey resident traveling from Malpensa Airport in Milan to New York was severely injured when the tarmac bus' door closed on her leg. She underwent surgery and was left with permanent injuries and a limp as a result. We filed suit for her in federal court under the (Warsaw) Montreal Convention and won significant compensation on her behalf.

 

DEFECTIVE ON BOARD EQUIPMENT

L vs.  J Airlines.

Mr. Bohrer resolved an action on behalf of Ms. O, a pregnant airline passenger who was struck on the head by a falling baby changing table in the lavatory of the aircraft restroom during flight. As a result of the impact our client suffered a major neurological injury and underwent spinal surgery. The airline refused to provide the passenger with medical attention during the flight and would not provide her with a copy of the statement that she gave to the flight attendants. After filing suit in federal court under the (Warsaw) Montreal Convention, Mr. Bohrer was able to win a significant monetary award for this young woman that provides her with lifetime income and economic security.

Bella L. vs. C Airlines

Upon landing in Haiti, the overhead bin randomly opened causing another passenger's heavy bag to drop onto our client's head. She was seriously injured and underwent spinal surgery to correct the damage. The airline denied the accident even occurred and claimed that the passenger dropped the bag on own head when she was getting up to leave the aircraft. After filing suit under the Montreal Convention and taking depositions of flight crew members, we were able to obtain a significant monetary award for our client.

 

EMERGENCY EVACUATIONS

In re emergency evacuation cases against A Airlines

As the aircraft taxied away from the terminal en route to take off to the Dominican Republic, the cabin filled with smoke and an emergency evacuation was ordered. Slides were deployed and a number of passengers suffered significant injuries in the melee that ensued. We filed suit in federal court under the (Warsaw) Montreal Convention and claimed that in addition to the "accident" that occurred under the Convention, the airline was grossly negligent in failing to properly staff and supervise the evacuation process which led to a number of serious injuries on the slide. We were able to achieve a significant monetary award on behalf of each our clients from the carrier.

 

MARITIME AND ADMIRALTY ACCIDENTS

Staten Island Ferry Accidents

On October 15, 2003 the Staten Island Ferry, Andrew J. Barberi crashed into a pier while docking at the St. George Terminal on Staten Island. Eleven passengers were killed and nearly 200 passengers were injured. Abram Bohrer filed suit against the City of New York, which owned and operated the vessel and served on the executive steering committee. He represented the estate of one of the passengers who was killed as well as  a number of the injured passengers and obtained a three million dollar settlement on behalf of the estate of Debra Castro and nearly one million dollars for another passenger who suffered a neck injury which required surgery.

Mr. Bohrer was hired by the Castro family because of his familiarity with not only maritime personal injury cases, but as reported by the New York Times, his familiarity with the lax safety procedures on the Staten Island Ferry in particular.

Two years earlier, Mr. Bohrer represented and successfully settled a case on behalf of a British tourist seriously injured in another Staten Island Ferry accident caused by poor communication, lack of skill and working equipment aboard the vessel.

 

OTHER NOTEWORTHY CASES

Construction

Mr. Bohrer has represented numerous construction workers injured in workplace accidents including Molodtsov v. The State of New York, where Mr. Bohrer obtained a nearly $1.7 million verdict on behalf of an asbestos abatement worker injured in a fall from an elevated work site. See also this link.

Civil Rights

In Claxton v. The City of New York, Mr. Bohrer obtained a $1.5 million settlement on behalf of a young man beaten and assaulted by police officers during a routine traffic stop.

Automobile Negligence

In F.S. v. A & T, we obtained a $1.2 million settlement on behalf of a young girl whose school van overturned causing facial scarring.

Mass Torts

Mr. Bohrer has successfully represented consumers injured as a result of defective Guidant defibrillators, the diet drug Phen Fen, the pain reliever Vioxx and currently represents a major New York area county in an action to recover payments made to drug manufacturers Merck and Schering Plough in connection with the drugs Vytorin and Zetia.