Aircraft Crashworthiness: A Blight or Panacea and Mr. Engineer-Are You Responsible 760494
Civil litigation arising out of claims of defect in design and/or manufacture causing injury has now expanded into a new arena giving rise to claims of defect in design and/or manufacture, increasing the injuries complained of, although not causally related. This new doctrine of “CRASHWORTHINESS” or “second injury” evolved first out of automobile accidents, but in the last few years, has been extended to aircraft.
Recent Court decisions have indicated a trend toward the adoption of this new doctrine by a majority of the Courts in this Country. This trend will obviously affect the future planning of aircraft manufacturers and engineers who are responsible for programs of research, development and production changes in the field of crashworthy design.
Secondly, this paper discusses the possible personal liability exposure of the engineer and the method and means by which the engineer may protect himself.