Widow sues Cessna after fatal in-flight breakup of Caravan 208B

Image Credit: NTSB Preliminary Report

In a tragic incident in November 2022, aerospace engineer Nathan Precup lost his life, along with three others, when the single engine turboprop Cessna Caravan he was on experienced a catastrophic structural failure, leading to the detachment of its right-wing mid-flight.

This devastating event has prompted a legal battle, as Danielle Martin, Precup’s widow, takes legal action against the entities involved in the design, manufacturing, and maintenance of the Cessna 208B EX Caravan.

Accident in Snohomish, Washington

On November 18, 2022, at 1019 Pacific standard time, a Cessna 208B EX Caravan registered N2069B was destroyed when it was involved in an accident near Snohomish, Washington. All four occupants were fatally injured.

Witnesses reported that they observed the airplane break-up inflight and watched pieces floating down. The airplane then descended in a nose-low, near-vertical corkscrew maneuver toward the ground.

National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigators, assessing the wreckage, found that the airplane’s right-wing assembly had detached during the flight.

Photo Credit: Wisner Baum

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Nathan Precup, a 33-year-old aerospace engineer from Seattle, tragically lost his life while participating in Raisbeck Engineering’s flight testing program for their aerodynamic drag reduction system.

His diverse background included stints as the operations manager for the University of Washington’s Kirsten Wind Tunnel and a year-long venture in Antarctica, deploying and operating a microwave telescope.

Source: NTSB Preliminary Report

In the aftermath of this tragedy, Danielle Martin has filed a wrongful death and product defect lawsuit.

This legal action targets Cessna’s parent company, Textron Aviation Inc., based in Wichita, Kansas. Martin seeks accountability for the flaws that led to the fatal incident.

The lawsuit also implicates Ace Aviation, Inc., responsible for maintenance, Mistequay Group Ltd., the aircraft components manufacturer, and Raisbeck Engineering Inc., the aerodynamics equipment design firm.

Wisner Baum attorneys Ari Friedman and Timothy Loranger, representing Martin, filed the complaint in King County Superior Court in Washington (Case No. 24-2-02236-8-SEA).

Friedman emphasized the importance of ensuring that aircraft can withstand normal flight operations, stating, “Companies that manufacture and maintain aircraft that fly over our communities must ensure the aircraft can withstand normal flight operations.”

“When that failure costs lives, those companies must take responsibility for the devastation they cause.”

Adding to the legal team, Daniel Laurence from the Seattle firm Stritmatter Kessler Koehler Moore joins as co-counsel on the case. This collaborative effort now looks to seek justice for the victims and their families.

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A lawsuit has been filed against Textron Aviation after the Nov 2022 catastrophic inflight breakup of a Cessna Caravan C208B which claimed 4 lives.
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