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Author Topic: Heathrow rules out compensation for delayed disabled passengers  (Read 604 times)
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« on: March 26, 2018, 08:01:25 am »

From The BBC

Disabled passengers who are stranded on planes at Heathrow airport will not be compensated, its chief executive says.

The BBC's Frank Gardner criticised the airport after he was left waiting for 100 minutes because his wheelchair had been misplaced by ground staff.

CEO John Holland Kaye said "I don't think it's reasonable that we should take financial responsibility."

He said Heathrow would aim to help disabled passengers off the plane within 20 minutes of landing.

On Saturday, the BBC's security correspondent said that airports would only listen to disabled passengers if there was a financial penalty.

Further down the article:

In an exclusive interview with Stephen Nolan on BBC Radio 5 live, Mr Holland-Kaye committed to a new target for disabled people to be disembarked from aircraft.

He said Heathrow will now be working to a standard of "20 minutes", after taking advice from Mr Gardner.

He clarified this would be "20 minutes after everybody else has got off" the aircraft.

It's also clear from the article that the line of responsibility for helping disabled passengers arriving off an aircraft involve both the airline (and their ground agents?) and the airport operating authority, with opportunity for each to point at the other.

I have never seen any rail target away from the actual running of the trains ...

* (1) Time from arriving to being clear of platform or gated area (I have known that to be up to half an hour when there has been no opportunity to purchase a ticket before or during the journey)

* (2) Time from train arriving to the doors being released (seems to be an issue with the IET sometimes). Particularly irritating when arriving at Swindon Platform 3 from Swansea in an already-late train and watching the 17:36 to Westbury leave,  signalled out on a crossing path, during the couple of minutes we were waiting to be released.

* (3) Time from a train being notified at cancelled / connection failing to alternative transport being provided where there is a massive gap in the train schedule. (Two recent incidents; delays of 70 minutes and 90 minutes).

The time failures to clearing the station, and being released from the train ((1) and (2)) are exceptional. The time taken to provide alternative transport (3) at an unmanned station is, I'm afraid, not exceptional - that delay is common place.

Coffee Shop Admin, Vice Chair of Melksham Rail User Group, and on the board of TravelWatch SouthWest.
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