21-116. Investigations and hearings. (a) General Power, Accidents, Witnesses, Subpoenas, Court Order. The department shall have the power to hold investigations, inquiries and hearings concerning matters covered by the provisions of this act and the rules, regulations and orders of the department, and concerning accidents in aeronautics within this state, providing that the appropriate federal agency fails to act at [within] a reasonable time. Hearings shall be open to the public and, except as provided in section 21-120, shall be held upon such call or notice as the department shall deem advisable. The director or any employee of the department designated by the director to hold any inquiry, investigation or hearing shall have the power to administer oaths and affirmations, certify to all official acts, issue subpoenas, and order the attendance and testimony of witnesses and the production of papers, books, and documents. In case of the failure of any person to comply with any subpoena or order issued under the authority of this section, the department or its authorized representative may invoke the aid of any court of this state of general jurisdiction. The court may thereupon order such person to comply with the requirements of the subpoena or order or to give evidence touching the matter in question. Failure to obey the order of the court may be punished by the court as a contempt thereof.
(b) Use and Limitations on Reports of Investigation. In order to facilitate the making of investigations by the department in the interest of public safety and promotion of aeronautics, the public interest requires, and it is therefore provided, that the reports of investigations or hearings or any part thereof shall not be admitted in evidence or used for any purpose in any suit, action or proceeding growing out of any matter referred to in said investigation, hearing or report thereof, except in case of any suit, action or proceeding, civil or criminal, instituted by or in behalf of the department or in the name of the state under the provisions of this act or other laws of the state relating to aeronautics.
[21-116, added 1947, ch. 153, sec. 16, p. 378.]