A lawsuit has been filed by the parents of one of the victims in last month's tragic crash of a Grand Canyon sightseeing helicopter.
The lawsuit, the first filed since the Feb. 10 crash, accuses the helicopter’s operator and manufacturer of negligence in the death of Jonathan Utall, 31, of England. It was filed Friday in Las Vegas.
The crash also killed Udall’s wife Ellie Milward and three British friends. Udall and Milward were on their honeymoon. The pilot and a sixth passenger, another British friend, were critically injured.
Philip and Marlene Udall, of England, claim in the lawsuit that their son would not have sustained “severe and catastrophic” burns if the Airbus EC130 B4 had been fitted with a crash-resistant fuel system, Sky News reported.
They are seeking $195,000 in damages, as well as punitive damages.
“Mr. and Mrs. Udall deeply grieve for the loss of their son but their primary motivation now is to prevent anyone else from having to suffer the deadly burn injuries as their son did,” their lawyer Gary Robb said, according to Sky News.
"If this helicopter had been properly equipped with a crash-resistant fuel system, it would have allowed this young man to walk away injury-free," he said.
Representatives of the helicopter’s operator, Papillon Airways, and the manufacturer, Airbus, did not immediately return email and phone messages seeking comment late Friday, The Associated Press reported.
The lawsuit comes after Papillon announced it would fit 40 of the crash-resistant tanks to its fleet in the wake of the crash, Sky News reported.
The National Transportation Safety Board concluded in a preliminary report that the helicopter made at least two 360-degree turns before crashing at the bottom of the canyon on tribal land.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.