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Family of MH370 passenger sues MAS in Australia

Flight MH370 disappeared mysteriously on March 8, 2014 while on a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing and hasn't been found despite an extensive search in the southern Indian Ocean.

Syndicated News
Written by Syndicated News
SYDNEY — February 24, 2016: The widow and sons of a passenger on missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 are suing the carrier in an Australian court, saying they have suffered nervous shock, a document showed today.

Just days before the second anniversary of the plane’s disappearance, Yen Li Chong along with sons Justin Jia Tian Tan and Javier Jia He Tan is claiming unspecified damages from the airline.

Her husband Chong Ling Tan was in the business class of MH370 when it disappeared on a Kuala Lumpur to Beijing flight on March 8, 2014.

The family is suing Malaysia Airlines under the 1999 Montreal Convention, which establishes airline liability for accidents.

“The defendant is liable for such nervous shock sustained by the first, second and third plaintiffs as a result of the death of the deceased,” the writ filed in the Victorian Supreme Court states.

The document alleges the aircraft would not have disappeared if not for the carrier’s negligence, which it said included failing to ensure the safety of the flight, that reasonable or adequate precautions were taken, and that the flight was monitored and tracked at all times.

It added that the nervous shock suffered by the 49-year-old widow and sons, now aged 19 and 15, was a direct and foreseeable consequence of the disappearance of the defendant’s aircraft.

The writ, filed on Friday and obtained from the court by AFP today, does not state the nationality of the plaintiffs, but the family lives in the Australian state of Victoria.

It is not the first case involving MH370, which mysteriously vanished with 239 people on board.

In October 2014, a Malaysian family sued the carrier for negligence over the plane’s disappearance, in what was believed to be the first lawsuit filed over the disaster.

Malaysia in January last year declared all on board to be presumed dead, which the government said would allow relatives to seek compensation and otherwise move forward.

The jet is thought to have crashed into the remote southern Indian Ocean but an Australian-led effort scouring the area has so far been unable to locate any wreckage.

Only a two-metre-long flaperon wing part that washed up on a beach on the Indian Ocean island of Reunion in July has been confirmed to have come from aircraft.

In Kuala Lumpur, Malaysian Airline System Berhad (MAS) urged all next-of-kins (NOK) of the MH370 tragedy to file their claims by March 8 to preserve their legal rights.

“In order to ensure that those affected will take the necessary steps to preserve their legal rights, the company has on numerous occasions kept all NOK informed of the two-year limitation period under the Montreal Convention, which in the case of MH370 ends on this March 8.”

A statement said the airline remained committed to continue engaging NOK in good faith with regard to ensuring a fair and equitable compensation.

“MAS has insurance coverage in place to meet its obligation to pay compensation to NOK as per its obligations under applicable international conventions and law.”

MAS said that to date the Administrator of MAS has granted 96 requests from the MH370 NOK to commence legal proceedings.

“No requests have been rejected. In addition 42 NOK have collected full compensation.” — Bernama

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