Aviation expert says 'plenty of blame to go around' in Southwest Flight 1380 deadly crash

Paul Kurtz
November 14, 2018 - 6:26 pm

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — A local aviation expert says the National Transportation Safety Board hearing into the events that led up to the engine failure of Southwest Flight 1380 seven months ago revealed a number of troubling issues that could have been addressed before the disaster.    

The Dallas-bound jetliner from New York was forced to make an emergency landing at Philadelphia International Airport on April 17. Seven people were injured and one person died.

Center City-based aviation attorney John Gagliano says from what he's learned there is plenty of blame to go around.  

RELATED: NTSB questions Southwest, Boeing in hearing to determine cause of deadly Flight 1380

"There's blame that the engine manufacturer, who knew that the stresses that these fan blades were under and there's blame at the FAA, when they saw a prior incident they didn't press the manufacturer enough to make the inspections more detailed and more regular," he explained.
 
The prior incident Gagliano refers to happened in 2016 when a fan blade failed during a flight off of Florida.

"There was a fan blade failure off of Florida. So the potential was there and unfortunately inspections were not done nearly regularly enough before this tragedy and now. Unfortunately, it's taken a loss of a life to ramp up the safety that I think should have been there before."

He believes another key point of interest for the NTSB will be figuring out why the engine failure was not contained. 

"The engine failure should have been contained and it wasn't and I'm sure that's another thing the NTSB will be looking at."

The former Navy pilot was also taken aback by revelations about broken oxygen masks and unattached air hoses.

"That's really troubling for anyone sitting in the back of a plane, probably hyperventilating anyway from the fear of what's going on and the terror," Gagliano said. "They're trying to get air and they've got this little Dixie Cup that's painted yellow that they're trying to put over their mouths with an elastic band and meanwhile the surgical tubing has come undone, so that's really troubling."