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Crash-affected passengers file class action lawsuit against Fly Jamaica

Reproduced from Jamaica Gleaner

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Fly Jamaica, Capt. Ronald Reece.

Fly Jamaica has been hit with a class action lawsuit following the November 9 incident in which one of  its planes crash landed at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport in Guyana.

Two Canadian law firms filed the lawsuit last Friday with the Superior Court of Ontario against Fly Jamaica for injuries and losses sustained.

The class action lawsuit has been filed by one of  Canada’s top personal injury law firms – Howie, Sacks & Henry as well as Camp Fiorante Matthews Mogerman which represents victims or families of victims who have been seriously injured or killed by product malfunctions or who have suffered loss or injury due to individual negligence or systems failures.

The law firms will seek to obtain compensation for the damage caused to the passengers.

John and Tulsidai Somwar are the Representative Plaintiffs for the Proposed Class Action.

The crash landing occurred after Fly Jamaica Flight OJ256 left Guyana’s Cheddi Jagan International Airport headed for Toronto. The Boeing 757, carrying 84 Canadian passengers, was forced to return to the airport 20 minutes into the flight after experiencing hydraulic problems. The plane overshot the runway and crash landed.

Several of the plane’s tires blew out and its right engine became dislodged from its wing as the plane came to a stop metres from a deep embankment.

Passengers suffered a variety of injuries and lost belongings that were left on the plane after evacuating, such as jewellery, cash and electronics. Passengers reportedly also had to arrange and pay for their transportation home.

Paul Miller, a partner at Howie, Sacks & Henry, says the firm will assist the passengers in finding answers surrounding the accident and help them recover their losses. He was previously co-lead counsel with Camp Fiorante for the victims of the Air France crash at Toronto’s Pearson airport in 2005.

Rookhai Kalloo

In addition to the class action suit, the relatives of 86-year-old Rookhai Kalloo are planning to sue Fly Jamaica.

Miss Kalloo, who was a passenger on the plane when it crash landed, died a few days later.

It has also been informed that Fly Jamaica has not offered the family any financial assistance for the funeral.

Ms. Kalloo, who had been residing in Canada for more than 20 years, was cremated on Monday.

A post mortem examination confirmed that she died from a fractured skull.

Miss Kalloo was travelling with her daughter and granddaughter when she reportedly suffered the head injury aboard the plane.

Egbert Field, Director of the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority, has confirmed that the black box of the Fly Jamaica aircraft will be sent to the US for decoding.

This will help the authorities to understand what caused the accident.