PHILADELPHIA (CN) – A widow claims in court that Sterling Airways, Teledyne and others knowingly distributed defective aircraft engines and engine parts, causing her husband’s death.
Elizabeth Snider and her two children sued Sterling Airways, Continental Motors, TDY Industries, Allegheny Technologies, Teledyne Technologies, and Technify Motors (USA) for the June 21, 2010 crash of a model T-210L Cessna just short of a runway at the William T. Piper Memorial Airport in Lock Haven, Pa.
The plane suffered a catastrophic in-flight failure and crashed. Snider’s husband, Daniel, survived the crash but died in the post-crash fire, the widow says in her complaint in the Court of Common Pleas.
Daniel Snider was working for the U.S. Forest Service, doing aerial deforestation surveys over Pennsylvania with fellow crash victims Rodney Whiteman, also with the Forest Service, and Sterling’s pilot Patrick Jessup.
Sterling provided the Forest Service with the aircraft and pilot and was required to maintain the plane, the widow says.
Teledyne Continental Motors (TCM) is the official certificate holder for the defective TSIO-520-H engine, Snider says.
She claims: “The 1999 ‘spin off’ of TCM from Allegheny was done for the purpose of shielding Allegheny from liability for known defects in TCM engines, including model TSIO-520-H engines.
“The Teledyne defendants and their unincorporated division applied for certification, performed certification testing, designed, and certified the TSIO-520-H engine as safe and airworthy. These defendants became aware of manufacturing defects with the hydraulic valve lifter assemblies, connecting rod assemblies, connecting rod bolts and nuts, cylinder assemblies, exhaust valves, exhaust valve guides, crankshafts, bearings, and pistons of the TSIO-520-H engine, yet they continued to represent to regulatory authorities and the public that the TSIO-520-H engine was suitable and reliable.”
Snider claims that Sterling failed to properly maintain the aircraft and wrongfully procured Aircraft Public and Passenger Liability Insurance coverage in the amount of $100,000 per person instead of the contractually required amount of not less $200,000 per person.
She seeks punitive damages for her husband’s lost income, pain and suffering, and emotional distress.
She is represented by John Merinar Jr. with Steptoe & Johnson of Bridgeport, W. Va.