Thursday 22 February 2018

Aircraft engineer wants new inquiry into death of colleague

Tim Healy

A JUDGE has adjourned his decision on an application by an aircraft maintenance engineer who wants new inquiries into the death of a colleague killed in a fall from a de-icing rig at Dublin Airport.

Kevin Carroll, Keatingstown, Co Wicklow, is seeking a High Court judicial review directing the Air Accident Investigation Unit (AAIU) and the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) to carry out the inquiries.

His colleague, David Ralph (58), Brackenstown, Swords, Co Dublin, fell seven metres to his death when the basket of a de-icing rig broke free and crashed on to the apron of the airport on March 19, 2009.

He claimed the AAIU and IAA were obliged by law to fulfil statutory duties by inquiring into the endangerment of aircraft operations on the basis there had been a “serious incident”.

His application, which was first made last August on a one-side only basis, was adjourned until both authorities could be notified and file papers in reply.

Today Mr Justice Michael Peart told Mr Carroll, who is representing himself, he would consider his application and notify him next week as to when he will give a decision on whether to grant him to bring the judicial review.

Mr Carroll told the judge he had only decided to bring his High Court application after he had attended an inquest into Mr Ralph's death last May when certain factual information emerged. Before that, there had only been rumours about the matter.

He believed the court had a discretion in the matter under the legislation governing such inquiries.

Counsel for the IAA said they had complied with all the relevant legislation by receiving a report into the matter which it had done.

Both the IAA and the AAIU have made submissions which the judge is to consider.

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