Brooks Aviation Inc. v. Wrecked and Abandoned Boeing Sb-17g Aircraft

In Admiralty Practice, In Rem Actions and Arrest on (Updated )

This very interesting application was for an order dispensing with service of the Statement of Claim, Affidavit to Lead Warrant and Warrant. The res was a B-17 aircraft that had crash landed on a lake in Labrador during the winter of 1947. The following year the aircraft sank during the spring thaw and it remains submerged. The wreck was discovered by the Plaintiff in July 1998. The story of the discovery of the wreck was widely publicized in both print and by a television documentary. The Plaintiff in its statement of claim alleged salvage rights to the wreck and, because it was impossible to serve the res brought this application. Given the special circumstances of the case, the court allowed the Plaintiff’s application. In doing so the court noted that the Plaintiff had provided Federal and Provincial authorities with the court documents and that notice of the discovery and the salvage claim had been or would be given to all interested persons.