Air Transport World

Passenger rights legislation blossoms in U.S.

Northwest Airlines' stranding of several thousand passengers during a blizzard last Jan. has spawned a number of pieces of legislation in the U.S. aimed at making the sides more friendly to consumers (see also Editorial, p. 7).

Generically described as "Passenger Bill of Rights" legislation, these proposals increase the financial compensation owed for lost baggage and bumping of passengers and would for the first time require airlines to compensate passengers for long delays taken on the tarmac.

At least four bills have been submitted to Congress, while Vice President Al Gore announced that DOT will propose regulations requiring better disclosure by airlines of items such as codeshared flights, the reasons for flight delays and cancellations, lost baggage and the like. …

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