49 USC 1154 - Discovery and use of cockpit and surface vehicle recordings and transcripts

(a) Transcripts and Recordings.— 

(1) Except as provided by this subsection, a party in a judicial proceeding may not use discovery to obtain
(A) any part of a cockpit or surface vehicle recorder transcript that the National Transportation Safety Board has not made available to the public under section 1114 (c) or 1114 (d) of this title; and
(B) a cockpit or surface vehicle recorder recording.

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(2) 
(A) Except as provided in paragraph (4)(A) of this subsection, a court may allow discovery by a party of a cockpit or surface vehicle recorder transcript if, after an in camera review of the transcript, the court decides that
(i) the part of the transcript made available to the public under section 1114 (c) or 1114 (d) of this title does not provide the party with sufficient information for the party to receive a fair trial; and
(ii) discovery of additional parts of the transcript is necessary to provide the party with sufficient information for the party to receive a fair trial.
(B) A court may allow discovery, or require production for an in camera review, of a cockpit or surface vehicle recorder transcript that the Board has not made available under section 1114 (c) or 1114 (d) of this title only if the cockpit or surface vehicle recorder recording is not available.
(3) Except as provided in paragraph (4)(A) of this subsection, a court may allow discovery by a party of a cockpit or surface vehicle recorder recording if, after an in camera review of the recording, the court decides that
(A) the parts of the transcript made available to the public under section 1114 (c) or 1114 (d) of this title and to the party through discovery under paragraph (2) of this subsection do not provide the party with sufficient information for the party to receive a fair trial; and
(B) discovery of the cockpit or surface vehicle recorder recording is necessary to provide the party with sufficient information for the party to receive a fair trial.
(4) 
(A) When a court allows discovery in a judicial proceeding of a part of a cockpit or surface vehicle recorder transcript not made available to the public under section 1114 (c) or 1114 (d) of this title or a cockpit or surface vehicle recorder recording, the court shall issue a protective order

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(i) to limit the use of the part of the transcript or the recording to the judicial proceeding; and
(ii) to prohibit dissemination of the part of the transcript or the recording to any person that does not need access to the part of the transcript or the recording for the proceeding.
(B) A court may allow a part of a cockpit or surface vehicle recorder transcript not made available to the public under section 1114 (c) or 1114 (d) of this title or a cockpit or surface vehicle recorder recording to be admitted into evidence in a judicial proceeding, only if the court places the part of the transcript or the recording under seal to prevent the use of the part of the transcript or the recording for purposes other than for the proceeding.
(5) This subsection does not prevent the Board from referring at any time to cockpit or surface vehicle recorder information in making safety recommendations.
(6) In this subsection:
(A) Recorder.— 
The term recorder means a voice or video recorder.
(B) Transcript.— 
The term transcript includes any written depiction of visual information obtained from a video recorder.
(b) Reports.— 
No part of a report of the Board, related to an accident or an investigation of an accident, may be admitted into evidence or used in a civil action for damages resulting from a matter mentioned in the report.