Plaintiff Cargo Airline v. Aviation Repair Station
Sedgwick obtained a defense verdict on behalf of our client, an aviation repair station, in federal court in California. Sedgwick tried this case twice before (2001 and 2005), each time with the result being reversed by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. The case involved the conversion of 747 passenger aircraft into cargo aircraft pursuant to a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) designed and owned by third parties and issued by the FAA. Our client was responsible for modifying two aircraft owned by the plaintiff pursuant to the FAA-approved design. In 1996, another office of the FAA issued an Airworthiness Directive, which asserted that the design was unsafe and effectively grounded all of the modified aircraft. The plaintiff alleged that the grounding of his two aircraft caused serious financial problems with his cargo business, ultimately resulting in an unsuccessful merger with another company. The plaintiff sought damages of $235 million for the loss of his business, which would have been more than doubled with prejudgment interest. The jury returned a 9-0 verdict in favor of our client.