Category Archives: NTSB

National Transportation and Safety Board

Agenda Update: The 2019 Aviation Symposium, Feb 5 – 7, 2019 in Tysons Corner

Wow! The clock is ticking and The 2019 Aviation Symposium is rapidly approaching. Our opening panel will focus upon accidents/incidents/events outside the United States. Nimbus Airlines will (in all likelihood), shortly before the Symposium, experience an issue somewhere in the world. Our crystal ball tells us there will be serious injuries, possibly a fatality, a criminal investigation, language and cultural issues, time zone problems and more. So get ready for an energetic and thought provoking discussion/panel.

Pipeline Companies Should Do More to Prepare for NTSB Accident Investigations

–Executives, employees and contractors should know the specifics of federal agency’s process, caution LeClairRyan attorneys; Massachusetts explosions highlight NTSB’s role in oil and gas sector. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is well known for its sleuthing on plane crashes. However, oil and gas executives often need better education about how the agency tackles one of its other responsibilities—investigating pipeline accidents, advise veteran attorneys with the national law firm LeClairRyan. The catastrophic gas explosions that destroyed dozens of homes in Massachusetts this month have called attention to the NTSB’s role in investigating such incidents, noted Mark A. Dombroff, an Alexandria-based …

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A Full House at the NTSB…

For the first time since April 2014, the National Transportation Safety Board will soon have a full complement of Board members. On July 24, 2018, the U.S. Senate confirmed the President’s nominations of Bruce Landsberg and Jennifer Homendy to serve as Board members. This is particularly welcome news because since January 31 of this year when former chairman and Board member Christopher Hart departed the agency, the NTSB has been operating with only three Board Members — the minimum number of members needed to meet the statutory requirement for a quorum to conduct official agency business. Under the statute that …

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Funding the NTSB … A Continuing Government Saga

In previous Plane-ly Spoken blogs (NTSB Reauthorization–Part I, and NTSB Reauthorization–Part II), we discussed and summarized the key provisions of S.2202, the National Transportation Reauthorization Act.  Senator Thune introduced this bill in the U.S. Senate on December 6, 2017, with co-sponsors Senators Blunt, Booker, Cantwell, Fischer, and Nelson.  The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation considered the bill and, on December13, 2017, approved it by voice vote and ordered it to be reported favorably with an amendment by Senator (and Commerce Committee Chairman) Thune. The Committee’s issued its report accompanying S. 2202 on July 10, 2018. Senate Report 115-293 …

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We Have a Problem on Line 7: NTSB Investigations of Pipeline Accidents

The NTSB increasingly focuses its attention on pipeline accidents and pipeline operators as no major domestic air crash has occurred in nearly a decade. Since January 1, 2008, the NTSB has launched 20 major investigations of pipeline accidents and issued numerous pipeline accident reports. These investigations fuel civil lawsuits, significant public attention, regulatory scrutiny, criminal prosecutions, and political pressure. Join us on June 13 for a complimentary 90-minute webinar where we will explain how to navigate NTSB investigations to minimize the impact on your company. During the webinar, you will gain unique insights from the most recent addition to our …

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An Inside Look at the NTSB – An Aviation Symposium Series Webinar

Thank you for the amazing turnout yesterday during our 90 minute webinar on the inside workings of the National Transportation Safety Board.  David Tochen, former NTSB General Counsel, Mark Dombroff and Mark McKinnon discuss background information, recent investigations such as the sinking of the S.S. El Faro, and so much more. If you would like to listen and follow along with the PowerPoint, please follow this link to the LeClairRyan event’s page.    

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Drone v. Helicopter: And the loser is…

The NTSB Report into the midair collision between a DJI Phantom and an army Blackhawk helicopter has been released and not surprisingly, the probable cause of the accident was sUAS pilot error. On September 21, 2017, an army UH-60 helicopter was operating in class G airspace at an altitude of 300 feet near Staten Island, New York.  The pilot saw the UAS and took evasive action, but it was insufficient to avoid the collision.  The helicopter suffered a 1.5 inch dent in its main rotor and cracks in the composite fairing and a window frame.  The Phantom was destroyed with …

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NTSB Reauthorization– Part I

The U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation completed work the week of December 4th,  on a legislative proposal to reauthorize the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). The last NTSB reauthorization was enacted in December 2006 and authorized NTSB appropriations through September 30, 2008 (Just to be clear, as long as a federal agency has current appropriations or other budget authority to operate, the lapse of authorization amounts does not impair its ability to continue operating). More importantly, the reauthorization proposal, S. 2202, would add new measures to the NTSB’s organic statute and amend numerous current statutory provisions. The …

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David Tochen Joins The LeClairRyan Aviation Team

Plane-ly Spoken strives to provide you with our unique take on the significant news of the day affecting the aviation industry.  Our task just got easier, as we are pleased to announce that David Tochen has joined the aviation practice at LeClairRyan and will be a regular contributor to Plane-ly Spoken. David retired from government service after most recently serving six years as the General Counsel of the National Transportation Safety Board.  Prior to that, he was Deputy Chief Counsel for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and Deputy Assistant General Counsel for the Department of Transportation. David Tochen will …

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