In this critical decision, on February 19, 2008 Judge Forrester, overseeing all claims arising out of the tragic August 27, 2006 crash at Lexington-Blue Grass Airport, issued a major ruling in plaintiffs' favor. Plaintiffs asked Comair to provide materials and testimony concerning its Aviation Safety Action Program ("ASAP"). Comair, supported by other aviation industry players who filed amicus curiae briefs, refused and moved for a protective order, claiming that the information was privileged and statutorily protected from disclosure and that making the ASAP reports available to plaintiffs would imperil aviation safety.
Rejecting all of Comair's arguments, the Court declared that Comair's briefing "brings to mind cymbals banging together very loudly, foretelling the destruction of the ASAP program and unsafe skies for the public if ASAP reports are not withheld from litigants on the basis of confidentiality." Judge Forrester, holding that no statutory, common law or policy basis existed for granting Comair's motion for a protective order, affirmed the magistrate judge's earlier order and directed Comair to produce all ASAP reports requested by plaintiffs.