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A Seatbelt Saved The Life Of This Alaska Flight 1282 Passenger

Wisner Baum represents the seven plaintiffs in this lawsuit.

SEATTLE, March 15, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Cuong Tran’s life was saved by his seatbelt when the side of the aircraft he was on tore away leaving a door sized hole just in front of his Row 27 window seat on Alaska Airlines Flight 1282. The plane rapidly decompressed as air rushed out of the hole, pulling on everything inside, including Tran and others nearby.

The suction immediately tore his shoes and socks from his feet. He felt his body lift off his seat and his legs were pulled towards the opening all while the aircraft climbed through 16,000 feet above Portland. Tran’s leg was jerked so violently that his foot was injured when it got trapped in the seat structure in front of him.

Cuong is one of seven passengers who have filed a lawsuit seeking to hold defendants responsible for causing them to suffer physical and psychological trauma resulting from the harrowing events of Jan. 5. The lawsuit (case no. 24-2-05657-2) was filed on March 14 in King County Superior Court.

“Our clients — and likely every passenger on that flight— suffered unnecessary trauma due to the failure of Boeing, Spirit AeroSystems, and Alaska Airlines to ensure that the aircraft was in a safe and airworthy condition,” said aviation attorney Timothy A. Loranger.

“The level of apparent negligence and disregard for safety protocols is astonishing, and terrifying,” added Loranger, senior partner at Los Angeles law firm Wisner Baum.

What started as a routine flight became anything but when the left mid-exit door plug of the Boeing 737 Max 9 violently separated from the fuselage. A door plug allows an emergency exit row door to be sealed up so that normal seating can be used. The near-tragedy happened because bolts essential for securing the door plug to the fuselage were apparently not installed. 

Cuong was seated next to his friend Huy Tran, right behind the row where the door plug blew out and described the sound as a deafening explosion.

A family of five, Ket Tran, Tram Vo, and their three young sons — also feared for their lives as the 737 decompressed. They are now in counseling to try and work through the trauma they experienced, Loranger said.

The lawsuit seeks punitive, compensatory and general damages for negligence, product construction/manufacturing defect liability, and failing in its duty to protect passengers from harm.

Media Contact:
Robin McCall 
Director of Public Relations Wisner Baum
[email protected]

SOURCE Wisner Baum

Originally published at https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/a-seatbelt-saved-the-life-of-this-alaska-flight-1282-passenger-302090471.html
Images courtesy of https://pixabay.com

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