September 19, 2008

South Korean Families of Air Crash Victims Sue Cambodian Airline

Text of report in English by South Korean news agency Yonhap

SEOUL, Sept. 19 (Yonhap) - The families of over a dozen Koreans killed in a Cambodian jet crash last year have sued the airline, demanding US$4 million in compensation for its failure to prevent the errors that caused the accident, a Seoul court said Friday.

All 22 passengers and crew members, including 13 Koreans, were killed when a PMT Air propeller plane went down over a mountain in June last year. The Russian-made jet was flying from Siem Reap, home of the famous Angkor Wat temple, in southern Cambodia.

Investigators broadly concluded that the accident was caused by a technical error on behalf of the pilot, problems with the airport's automated radar terminal system and defects in the plane.

A group of 11 families accused the airliner for failing to prevent the human and mechanical errors, demanding 4.5 billion won (US$4 million) in compensation for loss of income, funeral fees and for emotional duress, according to officials at the Seoul Central District Court.

"As the employer of the pilot of the plane and the contracted party for passenger transportation, PMT Air is responsible for compensation for damages incurred by the accident," the families claimed in the court document.

Originally published by Yonhap news agency, Seoul, in English 0049 19 Sep 08.

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