Most California residents are familiar with the sound and sight of helicopters. Various government entities and private corporations use these vehicles to patrol the state's highways, train military personnel, conduct tours and respond to medical emergencies. Helicopters are generally safe, but mistakes in operation or problems with design, maintenance and manufacturing have the potential for catastrophic consequences.
At the very least, aviation crashes are likely to result in severe injury and property damage. More often than not, the unfortunate reality is that not everyone involved survives any given helicopter accident. Even isolated incidents should be avoided, but these events happen more often than people might think.
Military operations represent a major portion of helicopter traffic. According to USA Today, a recent aviation crash presumably claimed the lives of four crewmembers during marine training exercises. The same article goes on to list several other military crashes, even one that happened on the same day involving a jet in Africa.
CBS reported on another aviation disaster in the state, in which a helicopter collided with a home. The tragic details of this incident are especially sobering when one considers that the company owning the aircraft advertised a perfect safety record prior to the crash.
Thankfully, helicopters do not plummet into the residences of unsuspecting California residents every day. Air travel in the state is relatively safe. The preservation this high level of safety requires individuals to continue to hold negligent helicopter operators and manufacturing companies accountable for the injurious results of their failures.