Air-crash victims' relatives sue five US corporations

The relatives of Russian citizens, who had been killed in an air crash over lake Bodensee (Germany) two years ago, have sued five US corporations, which turn out air-traffic control equipment.

This was disclosed by The Chicago Tribune; according to its sources, representatives of six Russian families have filed six separate lawsuits against Honeywell International, which is a leading US aerospace corporation, as well as four other companies, which produce and export electronic air-traffic control equipment.

Their electronic equipment and computers are used by European air-traffic control divisions for warning air crews well in advance and for preventing mid-air collisions.

Among other things, the plaintiffs blame US-made electronic equipment for the lake Bodensee disaster, also accusing US corporations of failure to adequately instruct equipment users.

Another 24 Russian families intend to file similar lawsuits on US territory.

A Boeing B-757 cargo plane serving with the DHL air-mail company and a Bashkir Airlines Tupolev Tu-154 jetliner collided in the early hours of July 2, 2002 over lake Bodensee. 71 people, including two B-757 pilots, as well as 12 crew members and 57 passengers of the ill-fated Tu-154 (including 48 children from Bashkiria, Moscow, Brest and Vladikavkaz), were killed. Skyguide of Switzerland was controlling all air traffic in that area.