Monthly Archives: June 2011

Valid Medical Certificate Required for Coverage

In a recent ruling, the Alberta Court of the Queen’s Bench corrected an earlier decision which found that a pilot’s estate was entitled to insurance coverage for loss of an aircraft, despite the fact that the pilot’s medical certificate had expired.

Nicholas Gudzinski took out an insurance policy (the “policy”) on his Cessna 177B Cardinal. The policy listed Gudzinski as an approved pilot and provided coverage:

“only if your aircraft is flown by an approved pilot … who has the required license or endorsements to fly your aircraft.”

On August 19, 2006, Mr. Gudzinski was killed when he lost control of the aircraft after making a slow-speed pass at a low altitude.  Gudzinski was issued a Canadian private pilot’s …

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Qantas Settles With Rolls-Royce

In a recent post, we noted that Qantas Airways had filed a preliminary action in the Australian federal court.  The lawsuit arose from the failure of a Rolls-Royce engine on November 4, 2010,  which led to a temporary grounding of Qantas’ entire A380 fleet.

Qantas announced today that it has reached a settlement agreement with Rolls-Royce which includes a discontinuance of the lawsuit.  While the terms of the settlement are confidential, the profit and loss impact of the settlement will reportedly be recognized in Qantas’ financial reports as A$95 million.

Last month, the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) released an interim factual report (link) stating that the failure was caused by a manufacturing defect in an oil feed pipe.  The ATSB’s investigation is ongoing …

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Criminal Acts During Flight

Two recent Canadian criminal court rulings considered charges resulting from the conduct of passengers aboard international commercial flights that landed in Canada.

These rulings confirm the jurisdiction of Canadian authorities to prosecute those who, during a flight that terminates in Canada, commit acts that would be considered a criminal offence under Canadian law.

On April 27, 2011, Michele Jules Ego (a 73 year old tourist from the French island Réunion) was charged under the Aeronautics Act for using an electronic device without permission and failing to comply with flight crew instructions. Mr Ego, a licensed pilot and retired mathematics professor, was using his GPS system on a flight from Minneapolis to Winnipeg.  He also refused to buckle his seat belt when …

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