April 29, 2019 1:39 pm
Updated: April 29, 2019 8:20 pm

Ontario families of Ethiopian plane crash victims file lawsuits against Boeing

WATCH: The families of 10 Canadians killed in March's deadly crash of an Ethiopian Airlines 737 MAX jet are suing Boeing and the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration. As Jackson Proskow reports, Boeing shareholders also have tough questions for the company's CEO.

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The families of 10 Ontario residents killed in the Ethiopian Airlines plane crash filed wrongful death lawsuits Monday over the catastrophic accident.

The lawsuits were filed in the federal district court in Chicago against Boeing and Rosemount Aerospace, Inc., which manufactured the allegedly defective plane device.

READ MORE: Boeing CEO faces shareholders for first time since fatal 737 MAX crashes

Separate claims on behalf of the Toronto-area families were also filed on Monday against the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration.

The lawsuits were filed for two families that each lost several members in the March 10 plane crash.

WATCH: Lawyer representing families of Ethiopian plane crash victims calls for Boeing’s board to resign

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Manant Vaidya is the plaintiff on behalf of the Brampton, Ont.-based Vaidya-Dixit family that lost six members in the accident from across three generations.

During a press conference Monday, Vaidya described his life since losing his family members.

READ MORE: Ethiopian Airlines crash — These are the Canadian victims

“It is hard to believe my entire family was wiped out in such an instant way,” he said. “It is affecting my family and is very hard. While driving with my wife, I suddenly get tears in my eyes.”

WATCH: Ontario man describes life after losing family in Ethiopian Airlines crash

Paul Njoroge is the second plaintiff and lost his entire immediate family in the crash. The Hamilton, Ont., man was also at Monday’s conference.

“I was left alone to lead an empty life,” he told reporters.

Robert A. Clifford, the lawyer who filed the lawsuit, said the purpose of the legal action is to hold Boeing and other organizations accountable.

READ MORE: Report says FAA overlooked warnings on Boeing 737 MAX 8

“Paul Njoroge lost his wife and three young children, including little nine-month-old Rubi,” Clifford said in a press release prior to the conference.

“These lawsuits will demonstrate the shortcuts and greed of Boeing and others as well as the utter disregard of the passengers they were to protect that could have avoided this tragic crash.”

The lawsuits allege Boeing rushed to have its 737 MAX 8 aircraft enter the market and the FAA “enabled” the company’s “reckless actions.”

WATCH: Boeing CEO apologizes, says new system caused crashes 

In addition to the Ethiopian Airlines crash that killed 157 people, the 737 MAX aircraft was also involved in the fatal Lion Air crash last October, which left 189 dead.

The aircraft have been grounded across the globe, including in Canada, as investigations into the crashes continue — and as Boeing works on a software update to fix the problem.

Boeing has faced several lawsuits and international outcry over the plane crashes.

WATCH: FAA meets with U.S. airlines, pilot unions on Boeing 737 MAX

On Monday, the Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg sought to bolster shareholder confidence in the company in his first general meeting since two fatal crashes.

READ MORE: Boeing is facing international criticism — but could it face criminal charges?

Boeing is under pressure to deliver a software fix and a new pilot training package that will convince global regulators — and the flying public — that the aircraft is safe to fly again.

At the meeting, Muilenburg told shareholders: “Safety is at the core of what we do. Every day, we try to get better.”

— With a file from Reuters

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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