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    Las Vegas

    I am flying to Las Vegas Monday to stay for a week. This will be my first trip on a plane since my injury. Does anyone have any tips for me. Billy Fryar "Keep on Rollin"


    I also will be flying at the end of the month for the first time since my accident. Yea, I'm a little worried, not about flying as I flew a lot with being in the military pre-sci, but about my power chair. I have friends who have flown with their power chairs and when they get back their chairs are trashed because of the airlines. Other than removing all detachable components and accessories does anyone have any other advice?



      Billy, have a great time. It will be HOT, so don't spend too much time pushing up and down the Strip, even at night. You can ride the city bus or take the trolley/shuttle, but you may have to wait a long time in the heat for either one. Cabs are best if you can transfer fairly easily.

      I understand that at the Rio buffet (one of the best) they let people in chairs go through the more expensive buffet for the lower price. Take advantage of those disability discounts when you can!

      Cowboy, be prepared to take your controls off the chair and take these as part of your carry-on. Take your cushion and sit on this on the plane. Tape everything down on your power chair with duct tape (leg rests, arm rests, etc.). Include a sign on the battery: "GEL BATTERY: DO NOT DISCONNECT OR REMOVE". Put another sign on the chair saying "DO NOT REASSEMBLE CHAIR WITHOUT OWNER'S GUIDANCE". Include "FRAGILE" and "POSITION UPRIGHT ONLY" stickers on all sides too.

      Insist on gate-checking your chair (you can ride all the way up to the door of the plane in your own chair). It will need to be carried down to the luggage area...insist that this be done by at least 2 workers as only one (even if very strong) risks dropping and damaging the chair. Be prepared to be VERY directive about your transfers on/off the aisle chair and into/out of your seat. We use two gait belts (one around the thighs, the other around the waist) and insist they lift from these...otherwise they will try to lift you under your arms (ouch!!).

      When you arrive, fully assemble your chair and then put it through all its paces BEFORE you leave the gate area. If any damage did occur, file a claim immediately prior to leaving the airport.


        Thank you for the pointers on flying. On the phone they told me that because I have gel-cell batteries they will have to disconnect them. Now your telling me not to let them? What should I do?



          No, gell batteries do NOT need to be disconnected or removed, only acid batteries. I am sure someone here can provide you with the written regs on this...take a copy with you.


            Airport security

            The following statement was issued on 10/29/01 by the Office of the Assistant General Counsel for Aviation Enforcement and Proceedings and its Aviation Consumer Protection Division:

            Recent steps have been taken to ensure new security requirements to preserve and respect the civil rights of disabled people.The Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA) and the Department of Transportation's implementing rules prohibit discriminatory treatment of persons with disabilities in air transportation. Since the terrorist hijackings and tragic events of September 11, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued directives to strengthen security measures at airline checkpoints and passenger screening locations.In securing our national air transportation system, where much of FAA's efforts have been directed to date, steps were also taken to ensure that the new security procedures preserve and respect the civil rights of passengers with disabilities.

            This Fact Sheet provides information about the accessibility requirements in air travel in light of strengthened security measures by providing a few examples of the types of accommodations and services that must be provided to passengers with disabilities.The examples listed below are not all-inclusive and are simply meant to provide answers to frequently asked questions since September 11 concerning the air travel of people with disabilities.

            Check-in: Air carriers must provide, meet and assist service (e.g., assistance to gate or aircraft) at drop-off points.The lack of curbside check-in, for certain airlines at some airports, has not changed the requirement for meet and assist service at drop-off points.

            Screener checkpoints:Individuals assisting passengers with disabilities are allowed beyond the screener checkpoints.These individuals may be required to present themselves at the airlines' check-in desk and receive a "pass," allowing them to go through the screener checkpoint without a ticket.

            Ticketed passengers with their own oxygen for use on the ground are allowed beyond the screener checkpoints with their oxygen canisters once the canisters have been thoroughly inspected.If there is a request for oxygen at the gate for a qualified passenger with a disability, commercial oxygen providers are allowed beyond the screener checkpoints with oxygen canisters once the canisters have been thoroughly inspected.Commercial oxygen providers may be required to present themselves at the airlines' check-in desk and receive a "pass" allowing them to go through the screener checkpoint without a ticket.The limit of one carry-on bag and one personal bag (e.g., purse or briefcase) for each traveler does not apply to medical supplies and/or assistive devices.

            Passengers with disabilities generally may carry medical equipment, medications, and assistive devices on board the aircraft.All persons allowed beyond the screener checkpoints may be searched.This will usually be done through the use of a hand-held metal detector, whenever possible.Passengers may also be patted down during security screenings, and this is even more likely if the passenger uses a wheelchair and is unable to stand up. Private screenings remain an option for persons in wheelchairs.

            Service animals, once inspected to ensure prohibited items are not concealed, are permitted on board an aircraft. Any backpack or sidepack that is carried on the animal will be manually inspected or put through the X-ray machines.The service animal's halter may also be removed for inspection. Assistive devices such as walking canes, once inspected to ensure prohibited items are not concealed, are permitted on board an aircraft. Assistive devices, such as augmentative communication devices and Braille'N Speaks, will go through the same sort of security screening process as used for personal computers. Syringes are permitted on board an aircraft once it is determined that the person has a documented medical need for the syringe. Personal wheelchairs and battery-powered scooters may still be used to reach departure gates after they are inspected to ensure that they do not present a security risk. Any backpack or sidepack that is carried on the wheelchair will be manually inspected or put through the X-ray machines.Personal wheelchairs will still be allowed to be stowed on board an aircraft. Air carriers must ensure that qualified individuals with a disability, including those with vision or hearing impairments, have timely access to information, such as new security measures, the carriers provide to other passengers. For example, on flights to Reagan Washington National Airport, persons are verbally warned to use the restrooms more than a half an hour before arrival since after that point in time passengers are required to remain in their seats. Alternative formats are necessary to ensure that all passengers, especially deaf persons, understand new security measures, such as the one at Reagan Washington National.

            We hope this information is helpful to you. Members of the public, who feel they have been the subject of discriminatory actions or treatment by air carriers, may file a complaint by sending an email, a letter, or a completed complaint form to the Aviation Consumer Protection Division (ACPD).

            ACPD's e-mail address is and its mailing address is:
            Aviation Consumer Protection Division, U.S. Department of Transportation, Room 4107, C-75, Washington, DC 20590.

            Complaint forms that consumers may download and/or print are available at

            Submit questions to: Marcie Roth, Director of Advocacy and Public Policy National Council on Independent Living 1916 Wilson Blvd., Suite 209 Arlington, VA 22201 (703) 525-3406 (V) (703) 525-4153 (TTY) (703) 525-3409 (F) (E-mail)

            Also you can get more information on the so-called "Access to the Skies" regulations here:



              Can your companion lift you on/off the aisle chair? Are airline personnel required to perform the transfers?


                Thanks for the info KLD as Reagan is the airport I will be flying into. However, I dont think I'll be jumpin up outta my seat along the way. [img]/forum/images/smilies/wink.gif[/img]


                  wheelchair stowage regs

                  Sorry for the double post. I forgot to ask if anyone had the regs that KLD mentioned about the battery thing. If so I would be very interested in seeing them.


                    Originally posted by rtr:

                    Can your companion lift you on/off the aisle chair? Are airline personnel required to perform the transfers?
                    It is your choice. however, if you needed help like this, you should have notifyed the airlines while making the reservation or at the desk while u check in. I have to most always do both.



                      Yes, if you have someone with you who can lift you all by themselves safely, then they can do all the transferring, although I have never seen them let anyone else push/pull the aisle chair into position. I am VERY directive with them about all the things they do with my mom...I am sure they are glad to see me go!!

                      Here is the specific regulation about wheelchair batteries:



                        Wild Bill,

                        Here's a tip, leave your credit card in your room. I made that mistake and it didn't turn out very good. I hope you have a good time and I'll talk to you when you get back.