On the afternoon of Super Bowl Sunday, a small plane crashed into a Yorba Linda home sending debris throughout the neighborhood. The pilot was killed in the crash, as well as four people in the Yorba Linda home. The victims—Roy Anderson, 85, and his wife, Dahlia Leber Anderson, 68, as well as their two visiting relatives, Stacie Leber, 48, of Corona and Donald Elliott, 58, of Norco—were killed when the plane crashed into the home, immediately setting the home on fire.
The Los Angeles Times reported that the Cessna plane flown by 75-year-old Antonio Pastini of Nevada took off from Fullerton airport around 1:35 p.m. It had only flown about 10 miles and gained about 7,800 feet of elevation when witnesses saw the plane falling out of the sky. The plane broke apart as it fell, losing its tail, wings, and engine. Debris from the plane hit approximately 16 homes. According to the report, “a piece of the plane’s engine knocked down a pillar on the front porch and torpedoed through a first-floor window, flying through two rooms before landing in a bathroom.” Additionally, pieces of the exhaust pipe went through a window, melting the carpet, and a propeller landed in their driveway.
Investigators with the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board started investigating the crash the next day. Because the plane broke apart midair, they do not suspect it was intentional. However, they will be trying to determine what caused this tragic accident.
When the investigation determines the cause, a wrongful death claim can be filed by the family members of those killed in this terrible accident. We recommend the families hire an experienced California wrongful death attorney who can help in the investigation and determine possible claims.
A fatal airplane crash can occur for many reasons including:
- Pilot error
- Improper maintenance
- Bad fuel
- Mechanical or product problems
- Air traffic controller negligence
Determining who or what caused the accident is crucial for determining who will be responsible for wrongful death damages.
In a situation like this one, if it is determined that pilot error is what caused the fatal crash, the families could bring a wrongful death claim against the pilot’s estate. If the plane was owned or rented out by a company separate from the pilot, the company may also be liable and is likely to have a commercial insurance liability policy to cover damages in case of such an accident. The investigation may also look into those who performed maintenance on the plane and the products that were used to see if there is any fault in this area.
The attorneys at Walch Law have successfully handled thousands of wrongful death claims for families who have lost loved ones in all types of accidents. There is never a charge to consult with us and we will do our best to answer any questions you may have about the legal process. To speak with us today about your potential California wrongful death claim, contacts us through our online form or call us at 866-INJURY-2.