ExcelAire and Honeywell Respond to Lawsuits

 - November 14, 2006, 10:37 AM

At press time, two lawsuits had been filed in the aftermath of the September 29 midair collision over the Amazon jungle. Each suit lodges claims against U.S. charter operator ExcelAire, the two pilots of the Legacy 600 involved in the accident and avionics manufacturer Honeywell. In a prepared statement, ExcelAire expressed its “deepest sympathies” to the families that lost loved ones on the 737 that crashed after colliding with the Legacy 600 that the charter operator was picking up from Embraer in Brazil and said that civil lawsuits at this time “are premature.” The facts surrounding the accident “have not yet been fully investigated and established in a comprehensive accident investigation,” said Miami-based attorney Robert Torricella, representing the ExcelAire pilots, who still have not been allowed to leave Brazil. “As the findings of the investigation are made public, we are confident that ExcelAire’s pilots will be exonerated.” A Honeywell statement said the company is “not aware of any evidence that indicates that its transponder on the Embraer Legacy was not functioning as designed or that Honeywell was responsible for the accident.”