ITYT Travel Forums  

Go Back   ITYT Travel Forums > Travel Companies & Programs > Airlines & Frequent Flier Programs > AirTran Airways (FL)
Click Here to Login

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 10-08-2003, 12:40 PM   #1
Junior Member
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: iah
Posts: 15
AirTran pays settlement to DOT

AirTran pays settlement to DOT

The U.S. Department of Transportation has found that AirTran Airways violated the Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA) and federal regulations by failing to comply with requirements for in-cabin stowage of passengers' folding wheelchairs.

The order issued also assesses a civil penalty of $125,000 against the carrier.

karl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-08-2003, 03:40 PM   #2
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: ATL
Posts: 267
Might As Well Tell the Whole Story

They also fined Southwest, JetBlue, and AmericaWest. Let's tell the whole story while we're at it:

Three airlines fined for not stowing wheelchairs properly
The Associated Press
Last Updated 4:17 p.m. PDT Thursday, August 28, 2003
WASHINGTON (AP) - The government fined three airlines a total of $750,000 because they couldn't stow folding wheelchairs inside aircraft cabins, but gave back most of the money so they could improve access for the disabled.
America West Airlines, JetBlue Airways and Southwest Airlines violated regulations banning discrimination against disabled passengers, the Transportation Department announced Thursday.

Other airlines are being investigated for similar violations.

America West spokeswoman Janice Monahan said the airline believes it complied with the law. The airline checked the passenger's personal wheelchair at the gate and then used another wheelchair to seat the passenger on the plane.

America West was fined $150,000 but received a credit of $135,000 so it could create the stowage space.

Southwest spokeswoman Linda Rutherford said folding wheelchairs couldn't fit into the overhead storage bins on the airline's Boeing 737s. The airline stored wheelchairs in the cargo hold and quickly brought them to the gate after the jetliner landed, she said. Now the airline is retrofitting the overhead bins over the next 14 months. The cost is being partially defrayed by the $450,000 credit on the $500,000 fine.

A call to JetBlue seeking comment was not immediately returned. The Transportation Department statement said the airline will use $90,000 of its $100,000 fine to create and a toll-free disability hot line and a quality assurance team to learn more about providing service to passengers with disabilities.
AirTran's $125,000 seems like little a slap on the wrist compared to the $500,000 Southwest was fined. As always, glad that I could bring you the WHOLE truth on this matter, and as usual balance the slant that is often put forth in this forum

haze is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-08-2003, 03:50 PM   #3
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: ATL
Posts: 267
Not to Mention

And not just the discounters, this from a Pittsburgh Business Journal:

March 26, 2003
DOT fines US Airways over treatment of disabled
The U.S. Department of Transportation has fined US Airways $550,000 to settle an investigation of the airline's treatment of passengers with disabilities.

In a statement Wednesday, the Department of Transportation said it found US Airways violated the Air Carrier Access Act and other federal regulations that require wheelchair service to be provided to disabled airline passengers.

Under the terms of the settlement, US Airways, of Arlington, Va., must refrain from such behavior in the future. Also, the settlement allows the carrier to use $400,000 of the penalty for activities that will improve its services to people with disabilities. The remaining $150,000 will be treated as an unsecured creditor's claim in US Airways' bankruptcy proceedings.

US Airways, which is Pittsburgh's dominant airline and one of the region's largest employers, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last August. It hopes to complete its restructuring by the end of this month.

"I believe as I did more than a decade ago, as a co-author of the Americans with Disabilities Act, that accessibility to transportation is a civil right," Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta said.

The DOT's Aviation Enforcement Office launched an investigation of US Airways' compliance with the federal regulations after receiving complaints.

A review of the complaints by the enforcement office, as well as US Airways, found violations including prolonged delays in obtaining wheelchairs and passengers left alone in wheelchairs aboard planes for extended periods of time, the DOT said.

A US Airways spokesperson could not be immediately contacted for comment.
And just like they did with Southwest, JetBlue, AmericaWest, and USAir, the DOT is refunding AirTran $105,000 of the $125,000 in order to implement the needed accessibility. The total fine ends up only being $20,000 when all is said and done
haze is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2003, 05:38 PM   #4
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: ATL
Posts: 267
Feds fine Delta for Wheelchair Allegations

The largest violator so far:

[ The Atlanta Journal-Constitution: 11/14/03 ]

Feds fine Delta for wheelchair allegations

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Delta Air Lines agreed to a $1.35 million civil penalty for failing to provide adequate help to passengers using wheelchairs.

The Department of Transportation said the Atlanta airline's fine is the largest so far for alleged violations of the 1986 Air Carrier Access Act.

"We found it was a serious violation," DOT spokesman Bill Mosley said.

However, Delta will only have to pay the government $100,000 if it reduces complaints from disabled passengers and spends at least $1.25 million to improve services.

The DOT said Delta failed to provide wheelchairs in some cases, or was slow to help passengers, or left passengers stranded in wheelchairs or on planes for extended periods. Under terms of the deal, Delta did not admit to the allegations.

Since March, the DOT has fined 10 carriers under the act. Previously, the largest was a $1.2 million fine levied on American Airlines. Last month, the DOT assessed a $125,000 penalty against AirTran Airways, the Orlando-based discount carrier that has its flight hub in Atlanta.

The DOT typically agrees to cut the fine dramatically if the airline agrees to spend a certain amount on better service to disabled passengers.

Delta spokesman John Kennedy said the carrier is spending more than the required $1.25 million, including $2 million on a computer training system to make employees and airport contractors more familiar with the requirements of the law. He said Delta was also the first to create a manager position to monitor compliance with the law.

"Delta is fully committed to meeting the terms of the order," said Kennedy.

The DOT said Delta's fine was based on a "significant number of apparent violations" revealed during an investigation of passenger complaints filed with the DOT and Delta from 2000 to 2002.

The law requires airlines to help passengers on and off planes, to have space reserved to store wheelchairs, and to promptly deal with complaints.
haze is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:41 PM.

Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0