Some Air Canada flight 624 passengers seek compensation through court

HALIFAX – The investigation into what caused an Air Canada flight to crash in Halifax on Sunday is continuing, but a movement is already underway to use the courts to get compensation for the passengers on board.

Halifax lawyer Ray Wagner said Tuesday a number of passengers have already contacted him.

“The big important issue is why did so many things go wrong at the same time,” he said.

READ MORE: Timeline of Air Canada flight 624 crash

Wagner is the same lawyer who represented the families of seven crew members who died in a cargo plane crash at the Halifax International Airport in October 2004.

He said passengers of AC624 want to make sure what happened to them doesn’t happen again.

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“Fortunately the injuries are, at least from the early stages, not significant, but they may turn out to be,” he said. “People may suffer from post-traumatic stress or may not realize that they suffer from other physical issues.”

READ MORE: Crash landing: How do airplane accidents affect survivors’ mental health?

While some passengers are turning to the courts, others say it’s too soon as they are still trying to process the crash itself.

“I think it might be a bit premature to be pointing fingers and blaming and turning this into a legal feed fest,” said Mike Magnus, one of the passengers aboard the flight. “Who do you blame? Do you blame the pilot? Do you sue him? Do you blame Air Canada? Do you blame Halifax Authority? Do you blame Airbus?”

Magnus said he feels lucky to have survived the incident.

READ MORE: A look at Air Canada’s safety record

“I’m just really, really thankful to be alive and be sitting in my home here and enjoying life right now,” he said.

Magnus’s wife Calla Shank-Hogue said she understands that some passengers want to see justice served for what they went through, but thinks more support should be offered to help the plane’s passengers and crew members.

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“How many people have been in a plane crash? Do we know how to help people through this?” she said. “Where’s [the] counselling, or psychological support, or emotional support, in terms of expectations of how you can work through this?”

The Transportation Safety Board of Canada announced Tuesday afternoon it had wrapped up its initial site assessment at the airport and the plane would be removed in the next few days.