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Santa Clarita Helicopter Accident Kills Mechanic

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Curtis Dale Cauthen, 31, was killed in a December 17, 2008 in a Santa Clarita helicopter accident. According to this KTLA news report, Cauthen, a mechanic for Swanson Aviation, was killed when a gust of wind caused a helicopter to blow over and spiral out of control. Cauthen, who was doing some work on the ground, was struck by one of the helicopter’s blades.

The helicopter was apparently contracted by Southern California Edison to string power lines between poles, Los Angeles County fire officials said. The helicopter’s pilot suffered minor injuries. The crash is being investigated by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). Cauthen’s employer, Swanson Aviation, is a sub-contractor working on Edison’s massive Tehachapi Renewable Transmission Project.

I offer my deepest condolences to the family of Curtis Dale Cauthen, who was tragically killed on the job. Please keep this family in your prayers.

I trust the FAA and NTSB will conduct a thorough investigation of this accident and determine who or what caused this fatal helicopter accident. Cauthen’s family, of course, will be entitled to workers compensation benefits from Cauthen’s employer, Swanson Aviation.

But if I were a member of the Cauthen family, I would definitely want to consult with a reputed California personal injury attorney who will fight for the family’s rights in this horrific accident. I’m sure Edison already has their attorneys and insurance carriers all over this case. I’d bet they already have their people assessing the situation and strategizing on how best they can protect Edison’s interests. Who is protecting the Cauthen family’s interests and their rights?

The NTSB and FAA investigation could take weeks or several months to get completed. A skilled California on-the-job injury attorney can help the Cauthen family secure the compensation they rightfully deserve not only through his employer, but also through a possible third party claim that may be worth much more to them. A third party claim is filed by an injured victim or his family against a third party such as a contractor or a defective product manufacturer who could be held liable for the accident.

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