BROOKSVILLE, Fla. – A tragic incident that occurred on January 10, 2019, at the Tampa Bay Regional Airport in Brooksville has prompted a lawsuit pursuant to Florida’s Wrongful Death Act.
The Plaintiff is Mario Disi, the natural son of deceased Salvatore Disi of Hudson. The Co-Defendants are Mohamed Ali, Aligence Air, and Old Republic Insurance Company.
Disi and Ali were co-pilots attempting to charge the battery on a Bell 230 blue helicopter said to be owned by Dr. Bonati, founder of Bonati Spine Institute in Hudson.
In the role of part-time jet pilot for Bonati, and with no work experience with helicopters, Ali remained inside the aircraft while Disi disembarked and walked to the front of it to start up a GPU battery charging system.
According to the lawsuit, Ali negligently made contact with or struck the aircraft’s cyclic control, causing the arc of the rotor blades to pitch forward at a sharp angle.
Ali then negligently reacted by pushing the cyclic control even further forward, which caused a more “forward pitch” of the rotor blades. The helicopter lifted from the ground and violently slammed back on the ground while the rotor blades were still revolving. Disi was struck by the blades, which decapitated his head.
The Hernando County Sheriff’s Office wrote a case master report which indicates Ali changed his story about the incident. He first claimed he was outside of the helicopter, but upon further questioning proceeding interviews with witnesses, he admitted he was inside the aircraft where his knee accidentally hit the cyclic control.
It is not known if Ali was too shaken to accurately recall the details of the tragedy.
Thomas D. Roebig, Jr. of Florin Roebig in Palm Harbor is Plaintiff Mario Disi’s attorney.
When asked if he believed there was any foul play in the incident, he replied, “I think this is just a tragic incident caused by negligence and error in judgment. This all happened relatively rapidly.”
Roebig said depositions are expected to be taken in a few months.