Ethiopian Airways crash – Next stages for the families of the victims – Sarah Stewart speaks to The Times
15 April 2019
Since 2006 Sarah has specialised in aviation related disputes resulting in death or injury in the UK and abroad. The claims she handles often involve jurisdictional arguments, issues of foreign law and the application of international conventions. She has acted in major air disasters, and fatal helicopter and light aircraft accidents in the UK, Europe and worldwide. She supports families through official accident investigations and coroner’s inquests.
Ranked in Chambers 2018, clients greatly value Sarah’s ability to provide highly professional support and guidance, while also demonstrating sensitivity during difficult and distressing cases.
Sarah is widely admired for her formidable work ethic and excellent client manner. She is described by Chambers (2017) as “a delight to work with” and “very diligent, dedicated and client-focused”. She has also been described by clients as “dynamic and knowledgeable” as well as “caring and compassionate” and has “great empathy with clients” (Chambers 2013 and 2014).
Legal 500 describe Sarah as ‘extremely good with clients’ and whose clients ‘have complete confidence in her’.
Sarah was instructed in the landmark case of Rogers v Hoyle  EWCA Civ 257  3 WLR 148,  3 All ER 550, in which the Court of Appeal held that air accident investigation reports produced by the Department of Transport are admissible in civil proceedings.
She also acted in Dusek v StormHarbour  EWCA CIV 604, which established liability on the part of a UK employer for failing to adequately risk assess travel arrangements for its employee travelling abroad for his work.
Sarah is currently acting for families of victims of the Shoreham Airshow disaster as well as families of passengers on board AirAsia Flight QZ8501, which crashed into the sea off the coast of Indonesia on 28 December 2014.
Sarah joined Stewarts in 2002, becoming a partner in 2007. She qualified with Gregory Abrams in Liverpool in 1997 before moving to London where she spent five years in personal injury at Bolt Burdon in Islington.
Sarah sits on the Air Law Committee at the Royal Aeronautical Society and is a member of the Pan European Organisation of Personal Injury Lawyers and the International Aviation Women’s Association.
Sarah presents as part of the MSc in Aviation Safety at Cranfield University and has spoken at several events hosted by the Royal Aeronautical Society, the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers and the European Air Law Association (EALA).
Sarah’s interests include running, cycling and skiing. She enjoys spending time with her husband and four children.