Air Transport World

U.S. decried on Warsaw system. (1929 Warsaw Convention on international air carrier liability; includes related article)

"Stagnation, inertia and reliance on unpredictable developments in the U.S." characterize ongoing attempts to update the 1929 Warsaw Convention, which regulates carrier liability in international air transport. This is stated in a study to the so-called Warsaw system--the convetion and subsequent amendments to it--undertaken for the European Community Commission (ECC) by Sven Brise, air law and insurance expert who long has served as the International Chamber of Commerce's air-transport commission rapporteur.

The report, "Possibilities of Community Action to Harmonize Limits of Passenger Liability and Increase the Amounts of Compensation for International Accident Victims in Air Transport," is an overview of the current status of the Warsaw Convention that, the Brise reports recalls, then-U.S. Secretary of Transportation Samuel Skinner in 1988 described as "unpredictable, unfair, costly and confusing."

However, the report concludes that the delay in U.S. ratification of amendments to the Warsaw Convention is "unavoidable, and the probability of ultimate defeat has increased almost to the point of certainty. …

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