Family of WBTV meteorologist killed in helicopter crash files lawsuit
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - The widow of WBTV’s Meteorologist Jason Myers has filed a wrongful death lawsuit in Mecklenburg County Superior Court. The suit alleges negligence by several companies involved in the fatal helicopter crash that took the lives of Myers and Sky3 Pilot Chip Tayag in November of 2022.
The law firm representing Jillian Myers filed the initial suit on March 6 naming Wilson Air Center – North Carolina, LLC as the sole defendant.
Three days later, the suit was amended to include additional defendants including Total Traffic and Weather Network (TTWN), iHeartCommunications, INC, and iHeartMedia. Tayag was an employee of TTWN, as well as the pilot-in-command of the helicopter on the day it crashed.
“The subject helicopter was owned, operated, and maintained by Defendants TTWN Media Networks, LLC, iHeartCommunications, and iHeartMedia and was being operated as Sky3,” according to the lawsuit.
The court filings allege contaminated fuel was provided and alleges negligence by all four defendants.
According to the lawsuit Wilson Air Center supplied fuel to the Sky3 helicopter on Nov. 22, 2022, as well as at least one other time between June and November.
The suit alleges the fuel provided on the day of the crash was contaminated, and that the helicopter was defective and flawed.
Initial findings released by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) makes no mention of contaminated fuel and according to the NTSB’s Case Analysis and Reporting Online, the status of the investigation into the crash is still ‘In work.’ The NTSB has not listed any probable cause in relation to the crash.
The lawsuit alleges, “Defendant Wilson Air Center knew, or by using ordinary care should have known, that fuel contamination is a dangerous and unsafe condition that has caused numerous fatal helicopter crashes, “Knowledge of this pervasive and dangerous fuel contamination conditions should have triggered a duty to carefully test all fuel loads for possible contamination; and Testing revealed helicopters had contaminated and tainted fuel.”
The suit says Wilson Air Center failed to perform an engine run-up check after fueling the helicopter.
TTWN, iHeartCommunications, and iHeartMedia are accused of failure to use ordinary care to maintain, repair, service, inspect, and operate aircraft and alleges the companies are ‘vicariously liable’ for the actions of Tayag and the helicopter mechanic.
The suit alleges TTWN, iHeart Communications & iHeartMedia were negligent in their duties for failure to provide proper training to pilots and mechanics, maintain the helicopter, and more.
The law firm representing the Myers family is asking the court to award damages for Jason Myers wrongful death, court costs, and any other relief the court decides is ‘just and proper.’
WBTV has reached out to Wilson Air Center, TTWN, iHeartMedia and iHeartCommunications for statements. Wilson Air Center, TTWN, iHeartMedia and iHeartCommunications declined to comment on the pending lawsuit.
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