DoT Fines US Air $550,000 For Violating Disability Law......Has Cust Svc sunk this low?

exagony

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Nov 2, 2002
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On 3/26/2003 6:46:18 PM Severed-N-Happy wrote:

Yes, probably has, no fault of the employees..........

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I notice that its NEVER the employees fault - always mgts - must have "superman" employees at U who are never at fault for ANYTHING - its always someone else''s fault.
 

Dea Certe

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Aug 20, 2002
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We really need to see more on what happened here. I haven''t noticed any problems getting wheelchairs in a timely manner for people. Sometimes it might take a few minutes longer to get an electric wheelchair brought up from the pit but not unreasonably so.

Something else must be going on here.
 

ual06

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Aug 30, 2002
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What gets me about this type of fine, is that the money goes to Uncle Sam with no mention of payments to those that may have been inconvenienced - the ones who may be most entitled to compensation. Federal money grabbers at work. Aren't you glad you pay their wages.
 

tadjr

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Aug 19, 2002
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We currently have two new training courses that we have to take on this very subject. The term disability covers a broad range of situations and any one of them, if handled incorrectly, is a fineable offense. It doesnt just pertain to wheelchairs or electric carts. I know we have recently begun a new local procedure where assist passengers are signed off each time someone else assists them right up until they board. The sheet is then turned in to the managers office in case something happened and someone complains so they can track who was handling the passenger. I was told that this was done because someone missed an assist passenger and they were left sitting there while their flight left them. It was not in my station, but management has been directed to set up a way to track each assist passenger in some manner.
 

ClueByFour

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Aug 20, 2002
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This sounds a lot like piling on. Everytime I''ve ever been on a flight with a wheelchair bound pax, they are typically boarded first, and there is always an agent waiting with the wheelchair in the arrival jetway. Without fail.
 

apofurlough

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Aug 20, 2002
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I may have been gone now for over a year but in my station we did not have any wheelchair responsibility - the skycaps did them and a lot of times we had to page the skycaps 3 or 4 times to get them to the gate. Is this the norm in other airports and could this be part of the problem - not US employees but the skycaps. Also this did not apply to only US but every airline that serviced the airport, they all paged several time for skycaps. I know as an agent it was very frustrating and several times we did end up getting the passenger into the wheelchair and off the jetway if a chair was in the gate area before ever seeing a skycap who then took over and brought them through security to baggage claim.
 

tadjr

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This might be part of the problem, however if US is contracting out, the company they use must also be in compliance, and that may be part of the problem. In Tampa the agents used to handle the wheelchairs off the plane and into the terminal and then the skycaps would take the passengers over to the main building. Now, the skycaps do all of the wheelchair work from the door of the plane off and from checkin to the door of the plane on. I''m not saying this is why US was fined, but it could be part of the reason since many of the "wheelchair" skycaps are new and may be inexperienced since that isnt where the "tip money" is.
 

apofurlough

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Aug 20, 2002
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I don''t believe US is contracting out as all airlines are the same including WN here so if it was only a case of contracting out then all the airlines would be fined.
 

delldude

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Oct 29, 2002
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are you guys positive that this doesn''t pertain to a violation regarding an affected employee being denied disability status? all the old rules have changed drastically as what can be done or not be done to an employee with a ''situation'' that may or may not fall under ADA.....
 
OP
S
Dec 21, 2002
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On 3/27/2003 1:57:51 AM delldude wrote:


are you guys positive that this doesn't pertain to a violation regarding an affected employee being denied disability status? all the old rules have changed drastically as what can be done or not be done to an employee with a 'situation' that may or may not fall under ADA.....

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Don't think so, in case you did not read the link, here is a small excerpt:

"The DOT said its Aviation Enforcement Office launched the investigation of U.S. Airway's compliance with the Air Carrier Access Act after receiving complaints. The investigation found the airline, on a number of occasions, failed to provide "prompt and proper" assistance to passengers with mobility impairments and failed to provide written responses to complaints."
 

Hope777

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Aug 19, 2002
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Can this be another reason why we should put the ERJ's on Jetways? I don't ALL the facts of the case but, it sounds like the CRO failed to due their job. Back to the ERJ issue, in our station we don't have a lift or elevator available to us to get the passenger into the terminal. We carry them off the aircraft on an asile chair onto the ramp, then carry them up the airstairs into the Jetway where we transfer them into a regular wheelchair. This process can take several minutes as it is hard to find enough C/S agents to complete this task.
 

tadjr

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On 3/27/2003 6:53:48 AM Hope777 wrote:

in our station we don''t have a lift or elevator available to us to get the passenger into the terminal. We carry them off the aircraft on an asile chair onto the ramp, then carry them up the airstairs into the Jetway where we transfer them into a regular wheelchair
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This is against regulations and we are going to get nabbed for it and fined again and whose fault will it be then? We just took a Sabre course last year that stated that effective Jan 1, all passengers must be carried on board using a lift and not "carried" up the stairs of the commuters. We have the same problem in my station and the manager has been advised and no lift has appeared after 3 months. We had a lift until Piedmont came and cleaned out the station (its a Mesa station now) and have had the situation arise a couple of times. Anyone in CCY listening, you might want to verify every commuter station has a lift chair for this purpose unless you want some more fines levied against us.