South Florida’s worst nightmare became a reality shortly after 1 pm January 6, 2017. According to reports, at least 5 people were killed and 8 others were seriously injured after a gunmen opened fire shooting innocent bystanders in Terminal 2 at the Fort Lauderdale airport. Early news reports state that a 20 year old passenger on board a flight from Alaska to Florida had the firearm in his checked luggage. When he arrived to the airport, he was able to retrieve the firearm and then started opening fire. The suspect was apprehended and has been identified as Esteban Santiago. It is unknown what motive played a role.
According to TSA regulations, passengers can transport firearms in a hard locked container. However, the hard containers need to be secured and or locked and the firearm must be declared prior to boarding. Whether or not Santiago was lawfully permitted to own or possess the firearm is unknown. So is whether or not he did in fact check the firearm consistent with TSA regulations on this flight. Obviously, this will all need to be carefully reviewed and investigated.
Personal injury lawyers with experience handling negligent security claims will likely want to know if all of the proper safety and security procedures were followed. If not, this may create legal liability on behalf of the airlines or potential other third parties. It’s still too early to tell what if any negligence may have played a role in this tragedy and if this tragic event could have been prevented, according to the personal injury and crime victims lawyers at Gerson & Schwartz, PA. www.injuryattorneyfla.com (877) 475-2905.