STEVEN LAMAR THOMPSON AS AN EXPERT OR CONSULTANT FOR AIRPLANE CRASH
For Plaintiff or Defendant
In the capacity of a non-attorney
I am a high-grade, airline pilot-flight engineer that may meet the aviation industry’s high standards to make truthful statements about specialization and expertise, and to advertise to claim qualifications as an “aviation consultant,” “aviation specialist,” and “aviation expert,” in the field of aviation where my claim may meet the “objectively verifiable” test.
I hold five valid, confirmable Federal Aviation Administration, FAA-issued certificates, and one Dutch RLD certificate, all in good standing:
(a) FAA Commercial Single & Multi Engine Land Instrument Airplane;
(b) FAA Flight Engineer A-300 B4 Airbus (FE) & Flight Engineer Boeing 727 (FE);
(c) FAA Flight Instructor (FI);
(d) FAA Advanced Ground Instructor (AGI);
(e) FAA Airframe and Power Plant Mechanic (A&P); and
(f) Dutch RLD certificate, Flight Engineer A-300 B4 Airbus.
I was employed (retired) as flight deck crew by a FAR Part 121 Scheduled Airline (14 C.F.R Part 121) which is the highest-level air carrier certification.
I have been formally trained by air carriers, FAR Part 121 Scheduled Airline (14 C.F.R Part 121), in a full-motion, full-flight, six-axis, Airbus A300 B4-200, and Boeing 727 flight simulator for both initial and recurrent flight training to proficiency that legally permitted me to exercise the privileges under both my FAA-issued and Dutch RLD certificates as flight deck crew.
I have made real-life decisions during live-cockpit scenarios on airliners, world-wide, to support the skill, and experience level required to have high-grade, airline pilot-flight engineer specialized knowledge.
I have been formally trained by air carriers in Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), e.g., turbojet aircraft cockpit checklists (e.g., Standard, Supplemental and Emergency Procedures).
I have been formally trained by air carriers in Crew Resource Management (CRM) to manage the risks associated with the true nature of the challenges, influences, and pressures that a flight deck crew faces during live-flight to assure a safe and efficient operation, both inside and outside the cockpit, to further support the training, and education level required to demonstrate specialized competence.
I have acquired in-depth knowledge of the constantly changing rules and regulations governing the complex civil aviation industry to legitimately exercise the privileges under my FAA-issued certificates.
I have substantial involvement in the field of aviation.
I am a high-grade, airline pilot-flight engineer that may meet a court’s high standards to formally “qualify” as an aviation expert founded on the specialized knowledge test.
Generally, if scientific, technical, or other specialized knowledge will assist the trier of fact (judge) in understanding the evidence or in determining a fact in issue, a judge may qualify a person as an aviation expert on a case-by-case basis to testify about it in the form of an opinion or otherwise, subject to specific conditions. A judge may formally qualify me as an aviation expert founded on the specialized knowledge test. Here, my skill, education, experience, training, FAA-issued certificates, and substantial involvement in the field of aviation may meet the specialized knowledge required to formally qualify as an aviation expert. See aviation consultant, aviation specialist, and aviation expert described above.
As it relates to a death suffered as a result of an airplane crash allegedly caused by pilot-error, multiple opinions are better than just one, and in the aggregate may aid in the analysis to determine factors that likely contributed to the probable cause or cause of an airplane crash, or otherwise. So, the opinions of other high-grade, airline pilot-flight engineers would certainly be very helpful. Most importantly, opinions may come from an “outside-the-box thinker” like me or another that may very well be the sixth-sense, stand-alone game changer.
As an aviation consultant, or aviation expert, together, we can seamlessly brainstorm as a high-performance team due to the diversity of our combined capabilities, commitment and trust, and through our “outside-the-box” thinking, identify the primary issue, understand everyone’s interests, list and evaluate possible solutions, and select the option that will produce an effective resolution.
It is extremely important to note that according to the FAA and the NTSB the largest percentage of aviation related accidents “airplane crashes” are caused by pilot error (with all due respect given to other pilots). Also, NASA research found that the primary cause of the majority of aviation accidents was human error (i.e., most likely the pilot), and that the main problems were failures of interpersonal communication (e.g., lack of Cockpit Resource Management, CRM)), leadership, and decision making in the cockpit. So, perhaps the best person to ask about what operational influences (risks associated with the competitive pressures affecting flight operations) did or did not happen in a cockpit that may have led to the probable cause or cause of an airplane crash is a high-grade, airline pilot-flight engineer with specialized knowledge in the field of aviation, like me.
Seeing that the largest percentage of aviation crashes are caused by pilot error (human error), it is more likely than not, that pilot error (human error) may outweigh any other probable cause of an airplane crash. Therefore, my primary role as a non-testifying aviation consultant hired in anticipation of or in preparation for litigation (or as a testifying expert witness) would be to make a good faith effort to “freeze” the moment of time in the cockpit to analyze what conditions, events, actions, and omissions, the pilot did or did not do correctly or proficiently while operating the airplane immediately after declaring that an emergency existed, and certainly what the pilot “may have been thinking” in the cockpit during the emergency that may have led to pilot error.
Also note that I do not assign fault or blame for an accident or incident; rather, my role is fact-finding with no formal issues and no adverse parties (plaintiff or defendant) and is not conducted for the purpose of determining the rights or liabilities of any person (unless I am in the capacity of an attorney). Assignment of fault or legal liability is not relevant to my opinion (in the capacity of a non-attorney). My opinion of the facts, conditions, and circumstances relating to an airplane crash “may” be very helpful to determine the probable cause or cause. Hopefully, this opinion alone, or combined with other opinions may lead to a confidential pre-suit settlement where an insurance carrier tenders its full policy limits without public disclosure.
Finally, my role is similar to an independent assessor on the flight deck, someone who is aware of the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), Emergency and Supplemental Procedures of a FAR Part 121 Scheduled Airline, and how things are supposed to be done safely – often from a “book” point of view, in contrast to what actually happens in the cockpit under real life scenarios. The gap between the procedures in the book and real-life scenarios not covered by the book are grey areas subject to pilot judgment. Here, an independent unbiased opinion may be required from a seasoned pilot to assess whether a pilot in the same situation would have made the same decision. The assessment is unbiased when it is done without local knowledge of the crew.