A new lawsuit alleges that a malfunctioning defibrillator on an American Airlines flight led to the death of a 14-year-old boy. The teenager suffered a cardiac arrest while on board the flight, and his mother is now taking legal action against the airline.
A recent lawsuit submitted by the teenager’s mother claims that the plane defibrillator was not functional. Since 2004, automatic external defibrillators have been mandated on commercial aircraft. Subscribe to our newsletter for daily updates on the latest tech news and developments, delivered straight to your inbox.
According to the lawsuit filed by the boy’s mother, a doctor on board the American Airlines flight was unable to resuscitate the 14-year-old after he went into cardiac arrest due to a faulty defibrillator. The lawsuit holds American Airlines responsible for the tragedy.
The lawsuit asserts that 14-year-old boy was on a flight from San Pedro Sula, Honduras, to Miami, Florida, in June last year when he suffered a cardiac incident. The wrongful death lawsuit, filed in a federal court in New York this month by his mother seeks an unspecified amount in damages.
The lawsuit claims that American Airlines neglected to “ensure that the automatic external defibrillator and its mobile battery pack were fully and properly charged” and that the airline’s alleged negligence “caused, permitted, and/or hastened the untimely death of” the 14-year-old boy.
The client’s attorney stated that the victim was traveling with his uncle to New York after a family vacation when he became unwell.
In response to the lawsuit, an American Airlines spokesperson stated that the company is examining the case details and expressed sympathy for the victim and his family.
Since 2004, defibrillators have been federally required on all passenger aircraft. American Airlines was the first US commercial airline to equip its planes with defibrillators in 1997 and train its flight attendants to use them. According to the Federal Aviation Administration, if defibrillators are missing or inoperative, the aircraft should not be dispatched.
The FAA advises that each airline should establish a protocol for automatic external defibrillator use. The minimum requirement is that the defibrillator is operational before a flight takes off, and airlines should inspect the AEDs based on the manufacturer’s recommendations.
American Airlines did not disclose to Insider the number of times portable defibrillators have been used on its flights. In a 2007 press release, the airline celebrated 10 years of carrying defibrillators on board, highlighting 76 lives saved by defibrillators.
A study by the Journal of the American Heart Association estimates that around 350 cardiac arrests related to air travel occur annually in the US, with one-quarter happening on board an aircraft. The study states that 15% of those experiencing a cardiac arrest on a plane survive long enough to be discharged from the hospital, attributing the higher survival rate to the presence of a defibrillator.
CONTACT PARKER WAICHMAN LLP FOR A FREE CASE REVIEW
If you or a loved one have experienced a similar tragedy involving a faulty defibrillator on a flight, contact Parker Waichman LLP, a law firm with extensive experience in handling wrongful death lawsuits. Contact us today at our toll-free number, 1-800-YOUR-LAWYER (1-800-968-7529), for a free, no-obligation consultation. Let us help you navigate the legal process and fight for the justice you and your family deserve.
The statute of limitations for filing a lawsuit is limited by law. Call Parker Waichman LLP today at 1-800-YOUR-LAWYER (1-800-968-7529) to receive a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our national wrongful death lawsuit attorneys. Our toll-free number is available 24/7, so you can call us anytime, day or night. We are here to answer your questions, listen to your concerns, and help your family receive justice and financial compensation.
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