Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Air travel for the elderly, disabled examined

Dr. Ruwantissa Abeyratne has written a thorough piece on the state of air travel for older folks and those with disabilities, including some recommendations for the future. A couple of his key observations:
-- "Disabled persons are now recognised as agents of their own destiny and not objects of care and are considered as being equally involved in the decision making process with regard to their general welfare. The welfare of the disabled air passenger should therefore be necessarily associated with the recognition and dignity that has now been accorded to him."
-- "Guidelines need to be formulated in regard to the acceptance by the airline of elderly and disabled passengers who claim that they are self-reliant and do not therefore need an escort for the duration of their air travel."
The whole article is here. (Photo by Richard Van Binsbergen via morgueFile.com)


At 7:32 AM, Blogger chetan said...

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At 3:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I live in Bangalore, India,and am 72 years of age and use a wheelchair, being unable to walk except with a support/frame. I am 6' tall and weigh 90kg Recently I have booked short flights by Jet Airways and Kingfisher, which used the small turboprop planes. Both airlines provided a wheelchair which was longer and narrower than normal, presumably designed to be used in the narrow aisles of these aircraft.

The most uncomfortable and, in my view, the most risky part of the journey was that when boarding and disembarking, the wheelchair and passenger had to be lifted and carried up and down the 5 or 6 steps between the ground and the plsne by around 6 ground staff. Had someone lost their footing, the consequences can only be imagined.

To add to this very unsatisfactory situation, Kingfisher Airlines made me sign a comprehensive disclaimer exonerating then from any blame or responsibility for my safety (I do not recall Jet doing that)

Surely it is time they used a hydraulic or mechanical lift for this procedure ?

And one more thing. Their wheelchair is to long to negotiate the corner of the entrance lobby and the aisle without lifting.

This may serve as a warning to disabled folk booked on Turboprop aircraft.


At 6:32 AM, Blogger visal_m said...

I am required to escort my mother who is 84 yrs old from Mumbai to Chennai. She had undergone femur bone fracture operation in Dec 2008.

Wish to know which is the best way and what precautions I need to take to make the travel safe and hazzle free for both my mother and self.

Suggestions would be most appreciated.


At 6:25 AM, Anonymous Airline Career Opportunity said...

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At 4:20 PM, Anonymous viagra online said...

I think it excellent that people with disabilities are taken as equal, is a good thing!


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