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  • Message from PVA about Airplane Travel

    Received this from the PVA (written by Sherman Gillums, the executive director, who used to be a member of CareCure):

    Dear XXXX,

    I am pleased to report that Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) recently introduced the Air Carrier Access Amendments Act (S. 1318) in Congress. For thousands of paralyzed veterans, it's about time.


    This is an important first step for airline passengers with disabilities. Now we need you to please ask your Senators to co-sponsor this pivotal legislation and keep this campaign moving forward.


    As you may know, the Air Carrier Access Act of 1986 was intended to make air travel more accessible to people with disabilities. Sen. Baldwin's bill takes the issue a step further with stiffer penalties for damaged wheelchairs, new airplanes that meet basic accessibility standards, and an Airline Passengers with Disabilities Bill of Rights.


    Together, we can make flying safer and easier for paralyzed veterans and anyone with a disability.
    Until then, people with disabilities will continue to face too many barriers to air travel. Airplanes are inaccessible. Wheelchairs are lost or damaged. Lifts are broken or unavailable. Enough is enough.

    Contact your Senators today and urge them to cosponsor the Air Carrier Access Amendments Act (S. 1318). Thank you!

    Sherman Gillums Jr.
    Executive Director (and paralyzed veteran)
    Paralyzed Veterans of America


    Since we have had so many discussions about the problems with the Air Carrier Access Act here, I thought some members might want to contact their Senators to support this legislation.

    (KLD)

    The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

  • #2
    Here is the complete text of the bill: https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-...bill/1318/text

    Section 9 is especially interesting:
    SEC. 9. Study on in-cabin wheelchair restraint systems.
    (a) In general.—Not later than 2 years after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Access Board, in consultation with the Secretary, shall— (1) conduct a study to determine the ways in which individuals with significant disabilities who use wheelchairs, including power wheelchairs, can be accommodated on board aircraft through in-cabin wheelchair restraint systems;
    (2) issue minimum guidelines for such systems; and
    (3) submit to Congress a report on the study.
    (b) Regulations.—Not later than 180 days after completing the study required by subsection (a), the Secretary shall prescribe regulations consistent with the findings of the study and minimum guidelines issued by the Access Board under subsection (a)(2).

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by gjnl View Post
      Here is the complete text of the bill: https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-...bill/1318/text

      Section 9 is especially interesting:
      SEC. 9. Study on in-cabin wheelchair restraint systems.
      (a) In general.—Not later than 2 years after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Access Board, in consultation with the Secretary, shall— (1) conduct a study to determine the ways in which individuals with significant disabilities who use wheelchairs, including power wheelchairs, can be accommodated on board aircraft through in-cabin wheelchair restraint systems;
      (2) issue minimum guidelines for such systems; and
      (3) submit to Congress a report on the study.
      (b) Regulations.—Not later than 180 days after completing the study required by subsection (a), the Secretary shall prescribe regulations consistent with the findings of the study and minimum guidelines issued by the Access Board under subsection (a)(2).

      This would be a dream. Sent my emails.
      Last edited by landrover; 08-19-2017, 02:10 PM.

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks to both KDL and GJNL. Important legislation, especially in light of new air carrier plans to put more seating in less space. I'll be contacting my senator.

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks for pointing this out. Hope she gets enough interest and support.
          I completed the PVA e-mail form online.
          They sent copies to Trump, Pence, my Congressman, Senator Cruz and Senator Cornyn. AKA: The "Republican Royal Flush"

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by SCI-Nurse View Post
            Received this from the PVA (written by Sherman Gillums, the executive director, who used to be a member of CareCure):

            [COLOR=#000000][FONT=arial]

            Since we have had so many discussions about the problems with the Air Carrier Access Act here, I thought some members might want to contact their Senators to support this legislation.

            (KLD)


            Sorry but I dont see barriers in air travel and I dont want to see airlines looking in to wheelchair restraints!

            Flying with wheelchair and power chairs loaded in the cargo hold is perfect, it works and its safer.

            Not sure if those posting travel much but its safe and simple and damage is minimal to none. When it does happen repairs can be very fast. We have even had DMEs meet us at our hotel before we get there for a repair.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by RollPositive View Post
              Sorry but I dont see barriers in air travel and I dont want to see airlines looking in to wheelchair restraints!

              Flying with wheelchair and power chairs loaded in the cargo hold is perfect, it works and its safer.

              Not sure if those posting travel much but its safe and simple and damage is minimal to none. When it does happen repairs can be very fast. We have even had DMEs meet us at our hotel before we get there for a repair.
              The thing is there is always room for improvement and refinement in the airline travel experience for people with disabilities, whether that is wheelchair experience, blind experience or hearing impaired experience. Advocating for the best possibly transportation accommodation for all travelers is not a bad thing.

              Nothing in the travel experience for people with a disability is as you say "perfect."

              If there are ways of making the original Air Carrier Access Act more meaningful and stronger, why would you be against it?

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by RollPositive View Post
                Sorry but I dont see barriers in air travel and I dont want to see airlines looking in to wheelchair restraints!

                Flying with wheelchair and power chairs loaded in the cargo hold is perfect, it works and its safer.

                Not sure if those posting travel much but its safe and simple and damage is minimal to none. When it does happen repairs can be very fast. We have even had DMEs meet us at our hotel before we get there for a repair.
                Generalize much? So if you've been fortunate thus far to not have experienced issues that have impacted your travel plans, then by all means others must not have been impacted either, right??
                Last edited by landrover; 08-21-2017, 08:18 AM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Be fair landrover . . . that is not at all what RollPositive was suggesting. Let me echo the earlier sentiment - - air travel for disabled folks will never be "perfect". I travel several times a month for my work and I have found (for the most part) airlines agreeable, sensitive and responsive to my needs.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by RollPositive View Post
                    Sorry but I dont see barriers in air travel and I dont want to see airlines looking in to wheelchair restraints!

                    Flying with wheelchair and power chairs loaded in the cargo hold is perfect, it works and its safer.
                    I agree. I do not want to be in the cabin with a chair strapped down to the plane. Here's why:

                    The forces in a crash a tremendous. Even if engineers design tie-downs or locks that can withstand the forces of a crash, it would need to be met with equal design tolerances for the WHEELCHAIR MANUFACTURERS.

                    Here's a scenario: A plane 'crashes' in a hard landing. No fireballs or anything, just an impact.

                    The base of a power chair is strapped down - the base frame with the wheels and battery and motor - but other pieces break off: the seat, the back, armrests, etc. These objects fly around the cabin and could injure or kill other passengers. For dramatic effect, let's say the entire top half of a power chair breaks free from the base, which is tied down.

                    That's dangerous and a liability and I don't want to be on that plane.

                    If you look around the cabin of an airplane - the seats and overhead bins - there are no pieces or bits that could break off. Everything is designed to high tolerances to withstand crashes and impacts at over 150mph (approx. takeoff and landing speed).



                    Now think about your average power chair - there could be headrests, armrests, footrests, ventilators, and other attached equipment. are all these pieces (including the seat vs. base) designed to withstand the g-forces of a 200mph crash?



                    And Manual chairs aren't exempted either: footrests, armrests, etc. And this is an Icon wheelchair. Do you think the single post between the seat and the base is designed to withstand the g-forces of a 200mph crash?



                    I keep on tossing around the idea of a "200mph crash". People do survive from impacts like that. But more common are accidents on the tarmac like this one below. Watch how forcefully the smaller plane gets tossed around by the A380:



                    To be clear, I am all for increased ease of access on planes. But I will refuse to support this unless wheelchair manufacturers start designing their chairs with the same tolerances as the airline industry designs their seats.

                    If you support this amendment or any similar legislation, I strongly encourage you to tell your local politicians to push for safety regulation of the wheelchair manufacturer industry as well.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Please note that this bill will NOT require that airlines set up systems to allow people to ride in planes in their wheelchairs...it will only require that a feasibility study be done about this. It is most likely that the study would come to these same conclusions.

                      Other features of this bill are a significant improvement in the current Air Access Act.

                      (KLD)
                      The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by SCI-Nurse View Post
                        Please note that this bill will NOT require that airlines set up systems to allow people to ride in planes in their wheelchairs...it will only require that a feasibility study be done about this. It is most likely that the study would come to these same conclusions.

                        Other features of this bill are a significant improvement in the current Air Access Act.

                        (KLD)
                        What other features are you seeing as benefits for our community?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Did you read the bill? https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-...bill/1318/text

                          ? 41705. Accessibility of air transportation for individuals with disabilities
                          “(b) Prohibited actions.— “(1) IN GENERAL.—An air carrier may not—
                          “(A) directly or through a contractual, licensing, or other arrangement, discriminate in the full and equal enjoyment (within the meaning of that term under section 302(a) of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 12182(a))) of air transportation;
                          “(B) deny the opportunity of an individual or a class of individuals, on the basis of a disability or disabilities of the individual or class, to participate in or benefit from the goods, services, facilities, advantages, accommodations, or other opportunities provided by the air carrier;
                          “(C) afford an individual or a class of individuals, on the basis of a disability or disabilities of the individual or class, with the opportunity to participate in or benefit from a good, service, facility, advantage, accommodation, or other opportunity that is not equal to a good, service, facility, advantage, accommodation, or other opportunity afforded to other individuals;
                          “(D) subject to paragraph (2), provide an individual or a class of individuals, on the basis of a disability or disabilities of the individual or class, with a good, service, facility, privilege, advantage, accommodation, or other opportunity that is different or separate from a good, service, facility, privilege, advantage, accommodation, or other opportunity provided to other individuals;
                          “(E) deny any goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, accommodations, or other opportunities to an individual because of the known disability of another individual with whom the individual is known to have a relationship or association;
                          “(F) impose or apply eligibility criteria that screen out or have the effect of screening out individuals with disabilities or a class of individuals with disabilities from fully enjoying any good, service, facility, privilege, advantage, accommodation, or other opportunity provided by the air carrier, unless the air carrier can demonstrate that such criteria are necessary for the provision of the good, service, facility, privilege, advantage, accommodation, or other opportunity;
                          “(G) directly or through a contractual, licensing, or other arrangement, use standards or criteria or methods of administration—
                          “(i) that have the effect of discriminating on the basis of disability; or
                          “(ii) that perpetuate the discrimination of others who are subject to common administrative control;
                          “(H) purchase or lease an aircraft that does not comply with this section and regulations prescribed under this section; or
                          “(I) refurbish an aircraft manufactured before the date of the enactment of the Air Carrier Access Amendments Act of 2017, or purchase or lease such an aircraft, unless the aircraft, to the maximum extent feasible, is made readily accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities, including individuals who use wheelchairs, in accordance with this section and upon issuance of regulations prescribed under this section.
                          This would prohibit practices such as those where a well-known disability activist was denied a flight (earlier this year) because the pilot was not "comfortable" having him aboard.

                          SEC. 6. Regulations.

                          (a) Accessibility of air travel to individuals with disabilities.— (1) ASSISTANCE.—
                          (A) IN GENERAL.—Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall prescribe or revise regulations to ensure that individuals with disabilities who request assistance at any time while traveling in air transportation receive timely and effective assistance at airports and on aircraft from trained personnel. Such assistance may be in boarding or deplaning an aircraft, connecting between flights, or any other similar or related request.
                          (B) TRAINING.—The Secretary shall require air carriers to ensure that personnel, including contractors, who may be providing physical assistance to a passenger with a disability receive hands-on training on an annual basis in performing that assistance, including the use of all equipment.
                          You may have been lucky to run into only "properly trained" people helping you board and unboard, but that is certainly not the experience I have had traveling with my mother, and reported by many on this site, and my clients, some of whom have actually been injured by untrained "lifters".

                          SEC. 8. Airline Passengers with Disabilities Bill of Rights.
                          (a) Airline passengers with disabilities bill of rights.—The Secretary shall develop a document, to be known as the “Airline Passengers with Disabilities Bill of Rights”, using plain language to describe the basic rights and responsibilities of air carriers, their employees and contractors, and people with disabilities under the section 41705 of title 49, United States Code, as amended by section 4.


                          and

                          SEC. 10. Advisory committee on the air travel needs of passengers with disabilities. (a) In general.—The Secretary shall establish an advisory committee for the air travel needs of passengers with disabilities (in this section referred to as the “advisory committee”) to advise the Secretary in implementing section 41705 of title 49, United States Code, as amended by section 4.
                          These were not a part of the original bill and needed to be added.

                          That is not all inclusive, but hits the high points.

                          (KLD)





                          The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by SCI-Nurse View Post
                            Please note that this bill will NOT require that airlines set up systems to allow people to ride in planes in their wheelchairs...it will only require that a feasibility study be done about this. It is most likely that the study would come to these same conclusions.
                            Thanks for that reminder, KLD.

                            I wanted to highlight that issue because in this thread and often others about air travel, there's always a few people that champion staying in their chairs on a plane. We should not be getting our hopes up about that and it's important to know why: It's dangerous for us and everyone else on board due to force of impact and how our chairs are designed.

                            I didn't mean to sound dismissive of the entire amendment. Baby with the bathwater and all.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I would be happy if every airport had a Eagle 2 lift. That would make flying a lot easier!

                              Comment

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