Another Passenger Is Suing Southwest Over Flight 1380
Zachary Coleman, a passenger on Southwest Flight 1380 that had an engine explode mid-air and killed one passenger in April, filed a lawsuit against the airline in New York on Thursday.
Coleman says he has been afflicted with post traumatic stress disorder since he was on board the fatal flight.
Flight 1380 was en route from New York (LGA) to Dallas (DAL) on April 17 when suddenly an engine fan blade snapped off, causing the engine to explode and sending shrapnel crashing through a passenger's window. That passenger, Jennifer Riordan, 43, was almost sucked out of the plane and later died as a result of her injuries. The aircraft cabin suffered a rapid depressurization and the flight's 148 other passengers had to breathe through their overhead oxygen masks in order to stay conscious.
Coleman was seated eight rows behind Riordan when the ordeal began on board the Boeing 737-700 at 32,000 feet. The lawsuit says that Coleman "prayed and feared for his life, he heard other passengers using their cell phones to reach out to loved one to say their final goodbyes, and he thought he was going to die."
As a result of that experience, the court documents say he has endured "severe personal injuries" in the months following the incident, including "post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, emotional distress, depression, personal injuries to his body including the physical manifestations of the emotional and mental trauma he experienced and continues to suffer."
In addition to the emotional trauma, the suit states that Coleman also had physical injuries as a result of the accident on board the flight. "The engine failure and breach of the window caused severe vibrations and the cabin environment to become a whirlwind of airflow and airborne debris which struck Mr. Coleman and obstructed his breathing."
The suit seeks damages for the emotional and physical toll, as well as loss of earnings.
Immediately following the fatal accident, Southwest sent all passengers a $5,000 check to help "cover any of [passengers'] immediate financial needs,” and a $1,000 airline voucher.
Coleman is not the first Southwest 1380 passenger to sue the airline. In June, eight other passengers filed similar suits seeking compensation for physical and emotional injuries stemming from the incident.
H/T: Daily Mail