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Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-27 15:02:06 and read 13598 times.

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/nationa...ed_boarding_Czc7AIeiirTOLhDsN4IwoJ

The man said several times the word bomb.
The guy can not help blurting out what is on his mind.
The trip was prepared beforehand, explaining his condition.

I think this time the pilot went too far.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: toobz
Posted 2013-04-27 15:08:32 and read 13587 times.

I don't. Everyone has this sense of entitlement and its being taken too far. We are far too concerned about being sensitive. It's time to stop. Ultimately it is up to the captain of the flight. It's also very unnerving to other passengers on board. I'm not saying its right or wrong. When someone like the captain has final say it's really up to him (her) and his (her) feelings. they are responsible for the aircraft. Time to accept that.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-27 15:33:57 and read 13502 times.

Quoting toobz (Reply 1):
I don't. Everyone has this sense of entitlement and its being taken too far. We are far too concerned about being sensitive. It's time to stop. Ultimately it is up to the captain of the flight. It's also very unnerving to other passengers on board. I'm not saying its right or wrong. When someone like the captain has final say it's really up to him (her) and his (her) feelings. they are responsible for the aircraft. Time to accept that.

Who has this sense of entitlement, the captain?

The airline was informed in advance.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: DeltaMD90
Posted 2013-04-27 15:36:51 and read 13493 times.

Gonna have to agree with toobz. He has a problem so reasonable accommodations can be made and it would be an excuse if he was going to be in trouble with the law/security... that being said, accomodations only go so far and even if you do have a legitimate problem, you can't expect the carrier or others to have to put up with it.

Can't you take meds for tourettes? It's unfortunate, but really

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flyingthe757
Posted 2013-04-27 15:56:31 and read 13417 times.

This is a tough one.....

On one hand you have a customer who has done all they can to inform the airline etc about his condition

On the other you have a plane full of customers where the captain can either explain to them about said person which could cause embarrassment , but then you would not have them worried about him shouting and swearing on the whole journey, but it still would not be nice to be on a long plane journey with someone shouting something like that every time he had a tick?


Its tough!

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: tonystan
Posted 2013-04-27 16:06:24 and read 13375 times.

It's Tourette's, it's a condition which can't be helped. It's like cancer.....would you forbid someone from travelling if they suffered some form of cancer???? No!

It's a unique condition but there you have it. I imagine most people these days are familiar with it. Chances are the person with the condition is mortified enough.

There are other conditions such as obesity which already have two threads running there....at least obese people are being given the option of purchasing another seat for a condition which 90% of the time is totally within their control!

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: zkokq
Posted 2013-04-27 16:09:01 and read 13357 times.

Wow, what a pickle to be in for the crew.

I feel for the family.

How does bomb become a word he would blert out? Does he recognize flying > bomb?

I thought tourettes was linked to profanity? Excuse my lack knowledge on tourettes.

[Edited 2013-04-27 16:10:39]

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: toobz
Posted 2013-04-27 16:27:27 and read 13289 times.

Somebody with cancer would not be yelling bomb out loud. That's the difference. Is the captain supposed to make an announcement explains the situation? Then the family would also be screaming at the top if their lungs. it's a tough one yes but ultimately the captain has the final word. That is a fact. They are responsible for the safety AND comfort of all pax.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-04-27 16:28:52 and read 13277 times.

We have seen these threads come up a bit now. Flying is not an everyday activity even though it is seen as one by most people on developed countries. There is no "right" to fly. The law is pretty clear on this, captain has final word on who gets on and off and unless his decision was completely arbitrary and capricious he is allowed to deny boarding of passengers for reason. Someone yelling bomb on a full plane is warranted of denying boarding IMO.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Jpax
Posted 2013-04-27 16:38:00 and read 13237 times.

Quoting tonystan (Reply 5):
It's Tourette's, it's a condition which can't be helped. It's like cancer.....would you forbid someone from travelling if they suffered some form of cancer???? No!

It is absolutely NOT like cancer, and it is offensive that you would even compare the two. As a captain, I would have taken the same course of action. 150 other passengers do not deserve to be terrified the entire flight because of a teenager yelling bomb.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-27 16:38:55 and read 13228 times.

Quoting toobz (Reply 7):
Quoting flymia (Reply 8):

Nobody talked about yelling.
The airline accepted the passenger knowing his condition.

When it is not for a defined safety reason it is arbitrary.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: toobz
Posted 2013-04-27 17:19:22 and read 13118 times.

Jpax sport on. Nobody is cheering the captain on but he has a responsibility to make sure everyone is comfortable.
Mjo..nobody in reservations or check in can guarantee a seat on board. Only the captain and that has been repeated many times. You may not agree but that's ur issue.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: infiniti329
Posted 2013-04-27 17:25:32 and read 13094 times.

Someone with tourettes is considered to have a disability according to the DOJ, that is covered by the ADA (american disabilities act). Now can this looked at as a form of discrimination? Even given the circumstances?

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: toobz
Posted 2013-04-27 17:41:06 and read 13010 times.

What a typical response infinity. Rules are rules whether u like it or not. As has been stated numerous times the captain has the last say. If he doesn't like the way u look at them they can deny boarding. This is what its come to. Except it. It has not been like that for a short time. It's been like that forever. Done. People in the US need to accept certain things and not scream discrimination all the time. And before I get flamed I've lived in the US for 25yrs. It's a sad state of affairs. May justice pay millions of dollars.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: infiniti329
Posted 2013-04-27 18:34:08 and read 12889 times.

Yes the captain has the final say.. but his decision must fall within the law no matter what the situation may be..this involves someone with a disability its whole different animal vs someone screaming racial or religious discrimination.. I am not saying the captain's decision was wrong I'm just asking if it could be looked at that way...

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: DeltaMD90
Posted 2013-04-27 19:36:02 and read 12752 times.

Quoting infiniti329 (Reply 12):
Someone with tourettes is considered to have a disability according to the DOJ, that is covered by the ADA (american disabilities act). Now can this looked at as a form of discrimination? Even given the circumstances?

Airlines are not bound by the ADA, they fall under the Air Carrier Access Act. Unfortunately I don't have the time to look up what it has to say about Tourettes, but airlines seem to have more leeway. Plus, a lot of this hangs on the Captain, and minus misconduct, it's kinda hard to form a good case against his judgement... it was his job to ensure the safety and orderly conduct of the flight and I'm sure he did what he did in good faith, not just because he was a bigot or something

Edit: dug this up quickly:

http://www.tsa-usa.org/aPeople/LivingWithTS/Air_Travel.htm

"Indeed, there is only one reason you can legally be refused service by an airline in the US because of your disability. If you behave in a way that actually harms, or threatens to harm, others on the plane you can be refused boarding or removed from the flight. This rule applies to anyone who flies, of course, not just people with TS. If you worry that your tics might be misinterpreted as potentially dangerous (for example, if you have a thrusting arm or leg movement), that’s probably a good reason to contact the airline in advance to ensure that accommodations are in place."

This is gray area... I can see how saying "bomb" over and over could be seen as dangerous or threatening...

[Edited 2013-04-27 19:41:38]

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: infiniti329
Posted 2013-04-27 20:22:59 and read 12657 times.

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 15):
Airlines are not bound by the ADA

After a quick google search, i found that in 2008 a federal judge ruled the the ADA applies to both airports and airlines

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Av8tor
Posted 2013-04-27 20:30:53 and read 12632 times.

No doubt a tough situation, but I would have done the same thing that this Captain did.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-27 20:36:25 and read 12617 times.

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 15):

Have you really read that link?

Not a lot of gray in this area!
"The Seligman case also established that the ACAA applies to people with TS specifically, regardless of the nature or severity of their tics, including major body movements and coprolalia. Your tics may be annoying or even offensive to someone on the flight, but unless they are actually dangerous, you are covered."

There is even a Complaint Resolution Officer who has do be immediately available.

I am pretty sure that the captain is either a bigot or missed the training about TS.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: DeltaMD90
Posted 2013-04-27 21:23:17 and read 12538 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 18):
Have you really read that link?

Yes and again:

"Indeed, there is only one reason you can legally be refused service by an airline in the US because of your disability. If you behave in a way that actually harms, or threatens to harm, others on the plane you can be refused boarding or removed from the flight. This rule applies to anyone who flies, of course, not just people with TS. If you worry that your tics might be misinterpreted as potentially dangerous (for example, if you have a thrusting arm or leg movement), that’s probably a good reason to contact the airline in advance to ensure that accommodations are in place."

I think that's kind of gray. Gray enough to give the captain the benefit of the doubt until we hear more information.

Hearing "f**k!" all flight may be annoying, but I'm sure hearing "bomb" all flight might strike real fear into some people, and I can see that misconstrued as a threat. Now if you or I were there..... but we weren't so I guess it really doesn't matter. To me it sounds like the airline should send out a memo to its pilots regarding the issue, pull the captain aside and explain the rules and what he should do, and let him off without discipline. As I said, I'm pretty sure the captain was just doing what he thought was right, without prejudice, but we weren't there so it's hard to say

Quoting infiniti329 (Reply 16):
After a quick google search, i found that in 2008 a federal judge ruled the the ADA applies to both airports and airlines

Hm, I've heard many times from this site that ADA doesn't apply to the airlines. Guess that's what I get from trusting a.net  

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: silentbob
Posted 2013-04-27 21:46:22 and read 12476 times.

Quoting infiniti329 (Reply 16):
After a quick google search, i found that in 2008 a federal judge ruled the the ADA applies to both airports and airlines

That's interesting, my manual states that the ADA does not apply to us and it has been updated fairly recently. Was there an appeal to that decision?

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-27 21:48:24 and read 12474 times.

Once again:

TS fails under the The Air Carrier Access Act.

"The Seligman case also established that the ACAA applies to people with TS specifically, regardless of the nature or severity of their tics, including major body movements and coprolalia. Your tics may be annoying or even offensive to someone on the flight, but unless they are actually dangerous, you are covered."

"Coprolalia is involuntary swearing or the involuntary utterance of obscene words or socially inappropriate and derogatory remarks." (Wikipedia)

Unless you can explain how the utterance of "bomb, bomb and so on" can actually bring a plane down it falls under the above.

Another quote from http://www.tsa-usa.org/aPeople/LivingWithTS/Air_Travel.htm :

"You may find that not all airline employees are as aware of their responsibilities as they should be. Accordingly, if you suspect your TS might draw unwelcome attention from either airline employees or fellow passengers, you need to know and assert your rights."

The right of the passenger is mentioned here, not the right of the captain or crew to refuse the passenger the right to fly.

[Edited 2013-04-27 22:04:30]

[Edited 2013-04-27 22:05:33]

[Edited 2013-04-27 22:06:57]

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-04-27 22:51:14 and read 12363 times.

Quoting infiniti329 (Reply 12):
Someone with tourettes is considered to have a disability according to the DOJ, that is covered by the ADA (american disabilities act). Now can this looked at as a form of discrimination? Even given the circumstances?


The law is the captain has a final say. We have seen this again and again and we have yet to see U.S. federal courts making a serious ruling on this. For two reasons either it is not a big problem or the courts have agreed with the captains. I am not saying what the captain did was the right decision all I am saying is the captain or the airline won't lose in a law suit if it got that far. Most airlines would just want to settle anyway, it would be cheaper.

Quoting infiniti329 (Reply 14):
Yes the captain has the final say.. but his decision must fall within the law no matter what the situation may be..this involves someone with a disability its whole different animal vs someone screaming racial or religious discrimination.. I am not saying the captain's decision was wrong I'm just asking if it could be looked at that way...


Airlines are govern by the Air Carrier Access Act, FAR, the Airline Deregulation Act etc.. Congress has made it clear that airlines need to follow the laws they specifically make for them. The law says captain has final say and the decision is fine unless it was arbitrary and capricious. It is clearly not the case in this situation.
See a case named Rubin v. United Airlines. It is a 9th Circuit Federal case so it is not case law in all states but this is one of the more famous cases and when determining if a passenger should be denied boarding or kicked off a place the 9th Circuit pretty much said that Airlines have Common Law and Statutory Duty of Utmost Care of Passenger Safety. As long as the decision was exercised in Good Faith and for a Rational Reason, Not Arbitrary and Capricious, it is OK. This is clearly the case here. And keep in mind this is the 9th Circuit the most liberal circuit in the country.

49 U.S.C. 40127(a): An air carrier or foreign air carrier may not subject a person in air transportation to discrimination on the bias of race, or national origin, sex or ancestor.
(b) Permissive Refusal, “Might be inimical to safety”

There is NO liability unless the decisions shown to be arbitrary or capricious.
The FAA Act of 1958 states FAA act of 1958: A carrier may refuse transportation to a passenger or property when in the opinion of the carrier such transportation would be inimical to safety of flight. You can't really second guess this stuff. (if in doubt go around) Airline Captains are the last people who will second guess a decision for safety.

I think the captain had two ways to handle it. Let the passengers know someone on the plane might be yelling out "bomb bomb" but is OK, or deny boarding. I do see it as a safety problem to the passengers not only their comfort but their emotional health if all of a sudden at 35,000ft someone started saying the word bomb. People would freak out, people would want the plane to land, people might become violent to the man saying bomb. I can see a lot of bad things happening. It is not all about the plane crashing, it is about the health and safety of the passengers are a whole. The captain is completely responsible for that from flying the plane to deciding whether to land for a medical emergency.

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 15):
Airlines are not bound by the ADA, they fall under the Air Carrier Access Act.


  

Quoting infiniti329 (Reply 16):
After a quick google search, i found that in 2008 a federal judge ruled the the ADA applies to both airports and airlines


What Circuit? At what level of that circuit. Might only be the case in that circuit. Congress does not like airlines having different laws in the different states hence the reason they made sure to take full control of airline regulation and state law almost never applies to anything relating to aviation safety or even business practices.

Quoting silentbob (Reply 20):
That's interesting, my manual states that the ADA does not apply to us and it has been updated fairly recently. Was there an appeal to that decision?


One federal case means nothing. Your manual is correct.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-27 23:52:30 and read 12292 times.

Quoting flymia (Reply 22):
The law is the captain has a final say. We have seen this again and again and we have yet to see U.S. federal courts making a serious ruling on this. For two reasons either it is not a big problem or the courts have agreed with the captains. I am not saying what the captain did was the right decision all I am saying is the captain or the airline won't lose in a law suit if it got that far. Most airlines would just want to settle anyway, it would be cheaper.


Everybody can agree on that I think.
Nobody overruled the captain, the flight left without the passenger.

Quoting flymia (Reply 22):
Airlines are govern by the Air Carrier Access Act, FAR, the Airline Deregulation Act etc.. Congress has made it clear that airlines need to follow the laws they specifically make for them. The law says captain has final say and the decision is fine unless it was arbitrary and capricious. It is clearly not the case in this situation.


That is exactly the point:

The captain did not follow the Air Carrier Access Act.
The captain ruled arbitrary and capricious.

https://www.disability.gov/home/i_want_to/disability_laws/air_carrier_access_act_(ACAA)

It starts with: "§ 382.1 Purpose.
The purpose of this part is to implement the
Air Carrier Access Act of 1986 (49 U.S.C.
41705), which provides that no air carrier
may discriminate against any otherwise
qualified individual with a disability, by
reason of such disability, in the provision of
air transportation."

This a simple but all including statement, I did not find an exclusion for Tourette Syndrome.
I do not see in what way the ACAA is less far reaching than ADA.

If the captain was afraid of a panic he could have made an announcement about a passenger with TS.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: silentbob
Posted 2013-04-28 00:09:24 and read 12262 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 23):
If the captain was afraid of a panic he could have made an announcement about a passenger with TS.

And had he done so, both the pilot and the airline would likely be facing a lawsuit for humiliating the passenger. Someone repeatedly saying "bomb" is not likely to find many crews willing to take them.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 21):
Unless you can explain how the utterance of "bomb, bomb and so on" can actually bring a plane down it falls under the above.

There are many kinds of danger on an airplane, blowing up is not the only potentially dangerous thing that can happen. There are conflicts in the cabin every day and it's not unlikely that this individual could have caused someone else to snap.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: FCAFLYBOY
Posted 2013-04-28 00:12:40 and read 12851 times.

Oh my goodness, the level of ignorance being shown in this thread is embarrassing to mankind.

DeltaMD90 - go and do some homework before stating your very uneducated opinions.

Some sufferers of Tourette's can help manage their condition with medication, yes, but that does not always stop the ticks and essentially it's a motor function of the brain which is outside of human control mostly.

Whilst I would never compare it with a serious and potentially terminal illness such as cancer, in many cases the 'embarrassment' and social ramifications of Tourette's can be DEVASTATING for the sufferer. Ever heard about the teenager arrested and almost sent to trial for calling someone the N word? Same thing.

If JetBlue really were aware of this, then this is a VERY poor show from one of my favourite airlines. There was absolutely nothing stopping ground or flight/cabin crew from making an announcement at/during/after boarding to explain there MAY be some disturbance and why etc etc...

I am more than sure the poor passenger humiliated in this way would have much preferred to have been explained than booted of the flight.

I hope the captain is sued and I hope the guy wins. Absolutely disgusting way to treat a human being with a known medical condition, which is also KNOWN to be highly circumstantial in its 'content' ie airport = bomb

[Edited 2013-04-28 00:18:50]

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: anstar
Posted 2013-04-28 00:13:52 and read 12706 times.

Quoting tonystan (Reply 5):
It's Tourette's, it's a condition which can't be helped. It's like cancer.....would you forbid someone from travelling if they suffered some form of cancer???? No!

You cant compare the 2. Cancer is likely not going to cause a disturbance to fellow passengers either.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 10):
The airline accepted the passenger knowing his condition.

Very true , but did they know he was going to be saying bomb?

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 15):

This is gray area... I can see how saying "bomb" over and over could be seen as dangerous or threatening...

Quite... especially in this day and age.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 21):
Unless you can explain how the utterance of "bomb, bomb and so on" can actually bring a plane down it falls under the above.

Well it is a pretty severe word to be using in an airport or an aircraft and carries severe penalties for the average joe. So I would say it is classed as being threatening to other passengers.

If he was saying the f workd over and over - no big deal.... but come on - bomb on an aircraft? I agree with the captains decision.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: FCAFLYBOY
Posted 2013-04-28 00:17:31 and read 12847 times.

Quoting silentbob (Reply 24):

I guarantee you the pax involved would have had no problem whatsoever with an announcement being made, if it meant he was allowed to fly as per conditions if carriage allowed him to.

USA needs to realise that being too afraid of a lawsuit all the time to do you job properly and professionally, with respect and compassion, is NOT acceptable and in many cases, as I'm sure with this one, it actually causes then.

Ignorant little man that captain. Arrogant and Ignorant.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-28 00:23:10 and read 12780 times.

Quoting silentbob (Reply 24):
Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 23):
If the captain was afraid of a panic he could have made an announcement about a passenger with TS.

And had he done so, both the pilot and the airline would likely be facing a lawsuit for humiliating the passenger. Someone repeatedly saying "bomb" is not likely to find many crews willing to take them.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 21):
Unless you can explain how the utterance of "bomb, bomb and so on" can actually bring a plane down it falls under the above.

There are many kinds of danger on an airplane, blowing up is not the only potentially dangerous thing that can happen. There are conflicts in the cabin every day and it's not unlikely that this individual could have caused someone else to snap.

So the Air Carrier Access Act should just be disregarded by aircrews and airlines?

The Act is to make it possible for disabled and handicapped persons to fly.

The crew could have asked the passenger if he would agree to an announcement.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: FCAFLYBOY
Posted 2013-04-28 00:23:58 and read 12784 times.

Quoting anstar (Reply 26):

If they had been made aware, I assume someone at B6 had done they homework on the condition.
If they had done so, they would of KNOWN how un-PC and inappropriate the language used often is.

It should have come as NO shock to staff that the word bomb may be used if they were properly informed of this pax in advance. No excuse. Epic fail JetBlue.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flyingthe757
Posted 2013-04-28 00:46:37 and read 12714 times.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 27):
I guarantee you the pax involved would have had no problem whatsoever with an announcement being made,

I'm pretty sure some people would have been less then ok to be on a long flight with someone yelling bomb every few minutes or so, even after an explanation...

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: blueflyer
Posted 2013-04-28 01:41:10 and read 12466 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 23):
The captain ruled arbitrary and capricious.

I think it may not be as easy as you think to get a judge to agree. Others may chime in with a more complete legal argument, but for the decision to be arbitrary and capricious, you need at least one of two things:
a) the person didn't have the right to make that decision (I hope we can agree a pilot has final authority);
b) there is no rationale between the facts available at the time the decision was made and the decision itself (I think you will have a hard time making a case that it is irrational, not just erroneous, but irrational to conclude that someone screaming "bomb" may pose a threat to himself or others).

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 23):
which provides that no air carrier may discriminate against any otherwise qualified individual with a disability, by reason of such disability, in the provision of air transportation

You overlook the significance of by reason of such disability. In plain English, this means no airline can discriminate against someone who is disabled solely because they are disabled. It does not prevent an airline, or a pilot, from refusing to transport someone whose disability is deemed a safety risk to the aircraft, the other passengers or indeed themselves. See below.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 21):
The right of the passenger is mentioned here, not the right of the captain or crew to refuse the passenger the right to fly.

The right to crew to refuse a passenger is in the Air Carrier Access Act. See §382.31 (d):
Carrier personnel, as authorized by 49 U.S.C. 44902, 14 CFR 91.8, or 14 CFR 121.533, may refuse to provide transportation to any passenger on the basis of safety, and may refuse to provide transportation to any passenger whose carriage would violate the Federal Aviation Regulations. In exercising this authority, carrier personnel shall not discriminate against any qualified individual with a disability on the basis of disability and their actions shall not be inconsistent with the provisions of this Part. In the event that such action is inconsistent with the provisions of this Part, the carrier shall be subject to remedies provided under § 382.65.

For your reference, 14 CFR 91.8, and 14 CFR 121.533 are the federal aviation regulations (FAR) making the captain legally responsible for the safety of the aircraft, crew, passenger and cargo.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: FCAFLYBOY
Posted 2013-04-28 02:08:05 and read 12305 times.

Quoting flyingthe757 (Reply 30):

I think you may have misunderstood my point, which was about the guy involved, not the other passengers.

However, I see no reason why other pax should be alarmed provided the situation had been explained properly, with compassion and understanding, which it was not.

Yes, some may still have felt uncomfortable, but then how many feel uncomfortable on any given flight even without a Tourette's sufferer using the B-word. Anyone really that uncomfortable could always choose not to fly, right?

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: silentbob
Posted 2013-04-28 02:16:38 and read 12236 times.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 27):
Ignorant little man that captain. Arrogant and Ignorant.

And what kind pf person partakes in anonymous, online defamation of another person?

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 28):
So the Air Carrier Access Act should just be disregarded by aircrews and airlines?

The Act is to make it possible for disabled and handicapped persons to fly.

The crew could have asked the passenger if he would agree to an announcement.

Our company doesn't have a policy about making an announcement like that. Doing so would end up with a letter in your personnel file, at a minimum. If the passenger decided to sue, it would be much worse.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: FCAFLYBOY
Posted 2013-04-28 02:38:06 and read 12123 times.

Quoting silentbob (Reply 33):

You are right, I only have the facts provided to go on. However it's my opinion and I'm entitled to it, so I'd appreciate it if you could add something to the argument (either side) rather than try to belittle my opinion on the subject. You're essentially doing the same to be honest. I'm quite sure I don't need to start quoting the millions of other examples of this having occurred many times on this forum.

Quoting silentbob (Reply 33):

Does your company allow employees to see if this is something that could/should be done, or is that out-of-the-box type of thinking frowned upon. At my company, discriminating against disability is illegal. I believe it's an EU thing.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Fallap
Posted 2013-04-28 03:09:45 and read 11956 times.

Being terrified by someone yelling b

Quoting silentbob (Reply 33):

Your Company? The Vatican Airlines?

Sorry had to ask :b

But sad that he was thrown off the aircraft, I have tourettes myself (Not as bad as his though)

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-04-28 03:22:16 and read 11914 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 18):
There is even a Complaint Resolution Officer who has do be immediately available.
Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 23):
The captain did not follow the Air Carrier Access Act.
The captain ruled arbitrary and capricious.

I'm a trained CRO for a major U.S. carrier.

Allow me to enlighten you:

14 CFR 382.19:

A carrier may refuse to provide transportation to any passenger on the basis of safety, or to any passenger whose carriage would violate FAA or TSA requirements. Carrier personnel may determine there is a disability related/direct threat safety basis for refusing to provide transportation to a passenger with a disability.


Frankly, I believe the captain made the right decision, but not because the customer posed a threat to the safety of others, but rather to himself. In today's world, someone saying "bomb" repeatedly onboard an aircraft runs the risk of being attacked by other passengers who perceive that individual as a threat to their safety and/or the safety of the aircraft.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: tonystan
Posted 2013-04-28 03:38:10 and read 11840 times.

Quoting Jpax (Reply 9):
It's Tourette's, it's a condition which can't be helped. It's like cancer.....would you forbid someone from travelling if they suffered some form of cancer???? No!

It is absolutely NOT like cancer, and it is offensive that you would even compare the two. As a captain, I would have taken the same course of action. 150 other passengers do not deserve to be terrified the entire flight because of a teenager yelling bomb.

It have you ever had cancer???? I'll speak FROM EXPERIENCE! Being 22 with such a condition changes a person and really allows you view the pettiness of the human condition I'm a different way.

Yes it's not like cancer,,,It can be cured like me!

But you wouldn't dream of refusing travel to a cancer sufferer because that person has no choice but to endure the pain. Likewise a Tourette's sufferer has no choice but to go with the flow of their condition!

I'm DISGUISTED at the ignorance on this thread regarding the condition!

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: tonystan
Posted 2013-04-28 03:46:25 and read 11755 times.

Quoting Jpax (Reply 9):
It's Tourette's, it's a condition which can't be helped. It's like cancer.....would you forbid someone from travelling if they suffered some form of cancer???? No!

It is absolutely NOT like cancer, and it is offensive that you would even compare the two. As a captain, I would have taken the same course of action. 150 other passengers do not deserve to be terrified the entire flight because of a teenager yelling bomb.

Have you ever had cancer???? I'll speak FROM EXPERIENCE! Being 22 with such a condition changes a person and really allows you see the peculiarities of the human condition!

Yes it's not like cancer.....cos in many cases like my own cancer can be cured....Tourette's can't. It's a neuro psychiatric condition which in its minor forms usually just exhibits itself in tics but in its extreme form can result in vulgar language or socially inappropriate comments (hence bombs) and cannot always be controlled by the individual.

But you wouldn't dream of refusing travel to a cancer sufferer because that person has no choice but to endure the pain. Likewise a Tourette's sufferer has no choice but to go with the flow of their condition!

I'd happily welcome a Tourette's sufferer on one of my flights and I'd ensure that all those in the vicinity of the customer would clearly see how at ease I am at interacting with the DECENT HUMAN BEING as this should be all that's needed to allay any fears. And those that do have a problem....well sorry but it is just your problem!

I'm DISGUISTED at the ignorance on this thread regarding the condition!

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: rwy04lga
Posted 2013-04-28 03:53:18 and read 11761 times.

Quoting tonystan (Reply 5):
It's like cancer.....would you forbid someone from travelling if they suffered some form of cancer????
Quoting toobz (Reply 7):
Somebody with cancer would not be yelling bomb out loud. That's the difference.

  

Quoting flyingthe757 (Reply 30):
Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 27):
I guarantee you the pax involved would have had no problem whatsoever with an announcement being made,

I'm pretty sure some people would have been less than ok to be on a long flight with someone yelling bomb every few minutes or so, even after an explanation...
Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 32):
Anyone really that uncomfortable could always choose not to fly, right?

Duct tape would cause less discomfort all around. Would the TS sufferer also be willing to endure discomfort in the form of his mouth being strapped up? If we should be willing to suffer his sufferings, and since he's already suffering, shouldn't he be willing to take on even more suffering. 'You find the duct tape over your mouth uncomfortable?' 'You can always choose not to fly!'

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-04-28 09:02:03 and read 10145 times.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 25):
I hope the captain is sued and I hope the guy wins

The airline would be sued not the captain, but if the case actualy got as far as trial I think the airline would win. We have pointed to the law. The law is clear. The captain has the right to refuse boarding for a very wide range of reasons this being one of them.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 36):
14 CFR 382.19:A carrier may refuse to provide transportation to any passenger on the basis of safety, or to any passenger whose carriage would violate FAA or TSA requirements. Carrier personnel may determine there is a disability related/direct threat safety basis for refusing to provide transportation to a passenger with a disability.
Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 27):
I guarantee you the pax involved would have had no problem whatsoever with an announcement being made, if it meant he was allowed to fly as per conditions if carriage allowed him to.

We do not know that. We can only guess if that was an option.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 27):
Ignorant little man that captain. Arrogant and Ignorant.

He made a decision for the safety of his flight. I am sure plenty of pilots would have done the same. I am sorry but if an announcement which even if the passenger said would be ok it could have still lead to big problems. Much bigger legal problems than denying him boarding.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 27):
USA needs to realise that being too afraid of a lawsuit all the time to do you job properly and professionally, with respect and compassion, is NOT acceptable and in many cases, as I'm sure with this one, it actually causes then.

Obviously the captain was not afraid of a law suit. The employees from the captain to the gate agents don't have much time to figure this out. We can sit here all day and think about it they could not. Was everything handled perfectly? No probably not. But was this some horrible case of discriminating against a person or the captain going outside of what the law allows him? Not even close.
If the passenger sues I don't see him wining in a trial. But it would not get that far anyway.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: garpd
Posted 2013-04-28 09:35:16 and read 9929 times.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 27):
Ignorant little man that captain. Arrogant and Ignorant.

You're judging a person you do not know from far away with the benefit of having all the time in the world to consider the situation. That in itself makes you guilty of being the same as you charge this Captain of being. Ignorant and arrogant.
You do not know him. You do not have the well being of 100+ other passengers to think about.

This Captain made a decision that benefited the majority of those under their charge. I see no evidence of ignorance, arrogance or bigotry in his/her actions. I am seeing it in a lot of posts on this thread however.

I'm sick an tired of the majority always having to make way and suffer inconveniences brought about them from a minority. Then when something has to be done that does not benefit the minority, somebody screams "Oooohh, racist/ bigotry/ arrogance/ blah, blah, blah".

If this Captain had decided to keep him on board and explained to the passengers what was up, I'm sure some here would still take exception to that and cry the bigotry and insensitive cards.
If this Captain had decided to keep him on board and not explain the situation to the other passengers, there would likely be several lawsuits being filed for putting people in a position of feeling terror and fear for their lives.

If the family of this man knew he was agitated about something, they had a duty of care to re-arrange travel or ensure a means of sedation. I know they will have seen some agitation. I've seen it myself.
I have a friend who's cousin has TS. When they are left with no choice but to fly, they offer him a mild sedative which keeps him calm and quiet. No one is inconvenienced, every one's well being is unbroken. They get to their destination without embarrassment and he enjoys his holidays. If he is too stressed about something, they re-arrange dates until he's fit to fly. Bottom line is, they take responsibility. They know his mood swings an the signs of agitation in his face.

[Edited 2013-04-28 10:01:45]

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: DeltaMD90
Posted 2013-04-28 09:51:37 and read 9808 times.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 25):
I hope the captain is sued and I hope the guy wins. Absolutely disgusting way to treat a human being with a known medical condition, which is also KNOWN to be highly circumstantial in its 'content' ie airport = bomb

Again, I'm sure the captain was doing what he thought was the best thing in his opinion, and wasn't full of hate, unlike you right now. You know, personally (and without being there,) I would try and accomidate the guy, maybe talk privately to those around the guy and do everything I could to take him.

But you were not there so how can you pass judgement on the guy? What about people with legitimate phobias (ie medical conditions) of flying? What if this guy's medical condition starts messing with other medical conditions? We can what if all day, point is, neither me nor you know what all the facts were so passing judgement on him like you're doing is wrong IMO

Lay off the hate, man. If this captain is indeed an ignorant bigot, then I'll join ya in hoping he gets disciplined.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: FCAFLYBOY
Posted 2013-04-28 10:59:05 and read 9435 times.

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 42):

You have not read my post in response to yours I see.

Quoting garpd (Reply 41):

We are bit discussing racism/ bigotry here people. This is discrimination against a certified condition/disability. That's entirely different.

Quoting flymia (Reply 40):

Is there no law in the US that prevents persons from being discriminated against on medical grounds of disability/illness .... If not, why not?! Though I'm fairly sure there is.

Quoting flymia (Reply 40):

Rubbish. Tourette's is in no way an endangerment to the flight. Again, I'm sure if for some reason the captain had requested additional security check, the pax would of complied (not that they would be necessary).

I'm sorry this smacks of ignorance and captain power trip. Prove to me he was a danger to safe flight, such as a terrorist or a drunk, then I'll agree with you.

Quoting garpd (Reply 41):

Just to highlight it again, your post sums up just one of the many things wrong with the human race today.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-04-28 11:35:59 and read 9210 times.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 43):
Is there no law in the US that prevents persons from being discriminated against on medical grounds of disability/illness .... If not, why not?! Though I'm fairly sure there is.

There are plenty of laws. Aviation has their own set of laws and in aviation the Captain has the final say and unless the decision was made in bad faith the decision is fine. The buck stops at the captain it is as simple as that. Captain is the end all say all.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 43):
Rubbish. Tourette's is in no way an endangerment to the flight. Again, I'm sure if for some reason the captain had requested additional security check, the pax would of complied (not that they would be necessary).
I'm sorry this smacks of ignorance and captain power trip. Prove to me he was a danger to safe flight, such as a terrorist or a drunk, then I'll agree with you.
Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 43):
I'm sorry this smacks of ignorance and captain power trip. Prove to me he was a danger to safe flight, such as a terrorist or a drunk, then I'll agree with you.

How about this:
Again making an announcement about the man having TS would probably be an even larger legal problem. So lets assume the airline does not want to take the chance of making this announcement. So the captain allows the man to board. If there are any law enforcement officers on the plane I would imagine the captain would at least tell them about the man.

At 35,000ft the man starts talking about bombs and the word bomb continues to come out of his mouth. I am not sure if he would just say bomb or say other things which have to do with bombs. The passengers near him hear this, they become concerned, other passengers get scared and freak out. His friend says don't worry he just has TS. They now think his friend is in on it too. People start to freak out, demand the plane land right away, possibly demand the men be restrained or just restrain them themselves. This is not about the plane crashing, it is about the mental and physical health of the passengers on the plane. If someone started saying "fire fire" on the plane it would not turn out well either.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: AA94
Posted 2013-04-28 11:50:39 and read 9127 times.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 43):
I'm sorry this smacks of ignorance and captain power trip. Prove to me he was a danger to safe flight, such as a terrorist or a drunk, then I'll agree with you.

I think you're really off base here. I would be uncomfortable spending several hours in a confined space with a man yelling / speaking "bomb," or really just yelling in general. And now, before you get all crazy and accuse me of being insensitive to people with disabilities, I'd like to inform you that I volunteer some time at a local assisted living home and have spent a great deal of time with people who have various mental and physical disabilities. So let's not even go there.

I think that JetBlue should have done some research and seen that this kind of thing was a real possibility, and stopped things before they got started. If I were the captain, I'd've done the same thing.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-28 11:57:10 and read 9107 times.

It is very clear to me that for most of your here on airliners.net the Air Carrier Access Act ist just a farce to be ignored if it will inconveniance the crew or other passengers.
It does not seem to bother most of you that a person, having anyway drawn the short straw in his live has been deeply humiliated.

The passenger behaved exactly like a person with Tourette Syndrom is likly to behave.
It is a condition which falls under the ACAA.
The airline was informed about the passenger in advance.

The savety argument should not be a conveniant way out for the crew, but a reaction to a defined danger and the decision of the captain should be reasonable and not arbitrary.

If your arguments are right, that the captain can for any imagined rather than a real danger decline to transport a person with Tourettee Syndrom, what is the use for a law like the ACAA?

And could anybody define for me in what way transporting this customer would have infringed on any other law regarding flight?

It is always easy to hide behind the savety argument to not of following the law if it is inconvenient.


It does not in this case look like the passenger is on the way to sue the airline. Blue jet seems to have refunded the ticket and offered a free flight at a later date.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: JHCRJ700
Posted 2013-04-28 12:43:45 and read 8890 times.

Quoting toobz (Reply 1):
I don't. Everyone has this sense of entitlement and its being taken too far. We are far too concerned about being sensitive. It's time to stop. Ultimately it is up to the captain of the flight. It's also very unnerving to other passengers on board. I'm not saying its right or wrong. When someone like the captain has final say it's really up to him (her) and his (her) feelings. they are responsible for the aircraft. Time to accept that.

Agree, Agree, Agree! Ultimately theres dozens of other people on that flight. I understand tourettes and know that the person can't help it, but at the same time would you want your young children on a flight with someone blurting out profanities? Love what you said about the pilots as well my friend. They should be the ultimate authority on the flight. If the captain feels that the person isn't fit to be on the flight that should be the end of it.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: petrhsr
Posted 2013-04-28 13:14:02 and read 8723 times.

The passenger's mistake was being born with tourettes instead of spending his life gorging on KFC and Krispy Kreme and turning into a huge massive fatty. Be denied boarding because you are 100kg overweight and you get international media attention and any number of fat-power groups offering you support to punish those who have so grievously wounded you.

Attempt to board with an inherited neuropsychiatric condition, for which there is no cure or universally accepted medical treatment, and it doesn't matter how much you forewarn the carrier, it's up the discretion of the Grand Arbiter of All Matters (the Captain) to overrule weeks of careful planning?

Sometimes we all have to take a step back and be a little less precious. There was no physical danger to anyone here, and I am not convinced that this would have caused any more distress than a screaming toddler.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: canyonblue17
Posted 2013-04-28 13:49:10 and read 8541 times.

First off, this is a very difficult call, and I agree in the end - it is the pilot's call. Second, I would highly doubt this decision was with arbitrary or capricious, as the pilot has to have all passengers safety concerned. And three, even if the pax is OK with announcing to the everyone on board that he is only saying the B- word because of his illness there is still a potentially dangerous problem - what if there is a legitimate B- on board and when someone screams about it everyone ignores it?

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: FCAFLYBOY
Posted 2013-04-28 15:51:16 and read 8046 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 46):

Thankyouverymuch - glad to see someone else in the 21st century  

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: FCAFLYBOY
Posted 2013-04-28 15:56:48 and read 8028 times.

Quoting flymia (Reply 40):

Again though, why? What has this passenger done that would cause an unlawful or dangerous risk
to this flight? By having a disorder? That's discrimination my friend.

As I have stated, if any passengers, having had the scenario explained professionally and with respect,
Would still have had the option, if they really kicked up a fuss, to not fly.

Why do the needs of someone with a disability comes secondary to others, just because they are outnumbered?
Sorry, but that's not a democracy.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: steeler83
Posted 2013-04-28 17:26:37 and read 7812 times.

This is a tough call, but I do have to side with the captain. As many have posted on here, he made a decision out of consideration for all on board the plane.

I don't personally know anyone who has T.S., but it is a nasty illness. I truly do feel for this family...

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-04-28 17:28:48 and read 7803 times.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 51):
Again though, why? What has this passenger done that would cause an unlawful or dangerous risk
to this flight? By having a disorder? That's discrimination my friend.

I have already expalined twice what I would imagine the captain was thinking. If you don't think those situations are dangerous than I don't know what to say.
Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 51):
Why do the needs of someone with a disability comes secondary to others, just because they are outnumbered?

Safety comes first before anything else, especially in air travel. Captain has final say that is what the law says.
Quoting petrhsr (Reply 48):
it's up the discretion of the Grand Arbiter of All Matters (the Captain) to overrule weeks of careful planning?
Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 51):
Sorry, but that's not a democracy.

Yes it is all up the captain and yes flying on an airliner is not a democracy. There is no "right' to fly and the captain at the end says if the plane goes or not and who and what goes on the plane. If the captain was denying black people or women from boarding his plane then he would be fired and the airline sued. This is not the case. The decision was made in good faith for the safety of the airplane as a whole. Again it is always up to the captain to make the final decisions on all these maters.
Quoting petrhsr (Reply 48):
There was no physical danger to anyone here, and I am not convinced that this would have caused any more distress than a screaming toddler.

In the captain's opinion they may have been. We have discussed this issue before and toddlers or older people with the mental capacity of children have even been denied boarding before.

Again I am not saying the captain was 100% right, all I am saying is that the captain did not break the law and I don't see any law suit being successful in court. I am basing my opinion off of the law and previous case history not just what I think is right or not.

Does anyone know if he got on another flight??

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: jagflyer
Posted 2013-04-28 17:36:56 and read 7790 times.

Having someone saying "bomb bomb bomb" during a flight is enough reason why this man was not allowed to fly. There are 100+ other passengers on the aircraft who would become quite scared due to this gentleman's outbursts. Other than announcing publicly to the aircraft about the issue (which is a problem in itself) there is no way around it. I don't understand how posters here are lambasting the crew for their decision. How do you think the other passengers would have felt if there was a passenger saying "bomb" every few minutes for the duration of the flight? That word is a very very touchy subject on aircraft and in airports which is even more reason to deny boarding.

The Americans with Disabilities Act refers to making reasonable accommodations for someone. I don't see how inconveniencing a plane full of 100 people and putting them in a state of fear is reasonable. Could the man not have taken some sort of sedative to relax him or put him to sleep for the majority of the flight in order to stop him from blurting out things? On the other hand, I sort of like the idea of pre-warning the passengers (with the permission of the tourettes sufferer) about the condition and if I was this guy it would have been much better than not being able to fly. Making others aware would help alleviate the embarrassment as others may understand what is going on and why this guy is blurting out strange things.

[Edited 2013-04-28 17:41:42]

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: btblue
Posted 2013-04-28 18:43:15 and read 7700 times.

Tourettes is a disability. The person who has it cannot control what they say.

I flew home this evening listening to people talking loudly (a few seats behind me) about the bomb in Boston. Nobody blinked an eye, or complained despite the word 'bomb' being heard certainly within about 36 pax and said, frequently.

I think had the captain or the crew informed the passengers that there was a really special passenger on board with such a disability they (the pax) would have been fine.

Sounds like an over reaction or a miscommunication.

[Edited 2013-04-28 18:59:48]

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-04-28 20:01:53 and read 7617 times.

Quoting btblue (Reply 55):
I think had the captain or the crew informed the passengers that there was a really special passenger on board with such a disability they (the pax) would have been fine.

Even with the man's consent this is really sneaking into big law suit terrority. If I was the captain, FA or FO there is no way I would get on the PA and say, "hey guys we have a man with TS on the plane so if you hear the word bomb don't worry it is just the man with TS on the plane." No way would I risk a law suit and my job even with the guys consent. If the guy wanted to tell the passengers himself than maybe but even that is a tricky subject.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-04-28 23:05:28 and read 7524 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 46):
It is very clear to me that for most of your here on airliners.net the Air Carrier Access Act ist just a farce to be ignored if it will inconveniance the crew or other passengers.

  

Tone it down. I take my responsibilities as a CRO very seriously, and while I completely understand your perspective were I called upon to exercise my duties as a CRO in this case I would have found the captain's decision to be within the bounds of 14 CFR 382 and reasonable for the safety of the passenger.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: MeCe
Posted 2013-04-28 23:49:08 and read 7477 times.

Quoting jagflyer (Reply 54):
Having someone saying "bomb bomb bomb" during a flight is enough reason why this man was not allowed to fly. There are 100+ other passengers on the aircraft who would become quite scared due to this gentleman's outbursts.




Scary: No Disturbing : Yes

I never mind a word out of mount from sick person. A less than average intelligence person can understand that guy is sick, so this situation is far away from scary. On the other hand; personally I don't want to travel a person continuously yelling -whatever he says-. A proper care should taken for situation may be strong sedative that suppress him.

[Edited 2013-04-29 00:04:05]

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: FCAFLYBOY
Posted 2013-04-28 23:53:26 and read 7478 times.

Quoting flymia (Reply 56):

Again, lawsuit or not, in the UK and EU this captain broke the law. Once you can prove how this passenger was a safety risk, then you have made a point, until then, I completely disagree with his decision and he broke the law IMO

The days of Captains having the final word on board are numbered for this very reason IMO and he has abused his position and caused a huge and un-necessary embarrassment without good cause or reason.

Tourette's is a disability, not a mental handicap and he's not a toddler. Either the captain or JetBlue ground staff got something very wrong here. I don't agree with US's compensation culture, however in this case I sincerely hope he sues the ass off of them, and wins.

It is never acceptable, in any industry, to discriminate based on disability, amongst other things. Those that believe that it is, belong in the Jurassic era. There was no threat to safety, perhaps the crew disliked what he was saying, but they should have handled the situation much much better.

[Edited 2013-04-28 23:59:34]

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-04-29 00:07:45 and read 7436 times.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 59):

Do you not read what I write. I and others have given you examples of how this man could have been a safety threat. Read previous post.

As for the rest. Great, I don't know UK or EU law, I know U.S. law and no law was broken here. Your opinion on the captain breaking the law is wrong, he did not. That's how the law reads, it is not really an opinion thing.

The days where the Pilot In Command loses authority over his own aircraft are here to stay and for good reason. Why in the world would U.S. congress change a system which works so well and is so safe.

And again I don't see this case have much merit in court. The man might sue and the airline will probably settle. Usually the cheaper option for big companies.

But again no U.S. law was broken. But hey what do I know, I've only been studying this stuff for two years now. I will say most agree with me though.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: ADent
Posted 2013-04-29 01:31:54 and read 7340 times.

I don't understand how words can bring down the plane.

Sounds like the guy will need a gag if he wants to fly.

I would rather sit next to this guy yelling bomb occasionally than large marge that can not get the arm rest down.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-04-29 02:46:35 and read 7269 times.

Quoting flymia (Reply 53):
Safety comes first before anything else, especially in air travel. Captain has final say that is what the law says.

This incident had absolutely NOTHING to with safety, period! No point using that much abused "safety" term over and over again, it just does NOT apply in this case.

Quoting flymia (Reply 53):
Yes it is all up the captain and yes flying on an airliner is not a democracy. There is no "right' to fly and the captain at the end says if the plane goes or not and who and what goes on the plane. If the captain was denying black people or women from boarding his plane then he would be fired and the airline sued. This is not the case.

You have just completely contradicted your own words within the paragraph above itself. You have basically said that there ARE limits to the captain's ablity to determine who gets on and who does not. Discriminating based on race or sex is the example you provided. Discrimintation based on disability is exactly the same as per the law. By your own example, he should be fired and the airline sued.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-04-29 04:06:47 and read 7201 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 62):
This incident had absolutely NOTHING to with safety

And you know this because you read the ground safety report filed by the company, right?

Oh wait - you don't?

You mean the captain actually COULD have had valid reason (as I cited earlier, under 14 CFR 382) for denying this person boarding?

Perhaps you should refrain from painting with such broad strokes until you know all the details, and not just the ones that happen to make you froth at the mouth.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: davescj
Posted 2013-04-29 05:28:36 and read 7102 times.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 59):
Again, lawsuit or not, in the UK and EU this captain broke the law. Once you can prove how this passenger was a safety risk, then you have made a point, until then, I completely disagree with his decision and he broke the law IMO

As I have thought about this, let me suggest the following (hypothetical) situation:

The man with TS boards, doesn't say anything, no announcement made (to protect his medical privacy).

After the boarding door closes, the aircraft pushes back.

Then the man loudly says BOMB.

The person next to him asks "OMG, is there a bomb on the plane?"

A person a few rows backs says "There's a bomb on the plane."

A person freaks out, opens an emergency door (say over the wing). The engines are running (possibly still). The cabin is in chaos.

Now what? You have a panicked cabin, possibly people trying to evacuate the cabin (not in the safest way), the whole airport is going to have issues.

Who would be responsible?

Dave

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-04-29 06:13:18 and read 7067 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 63):
Quoting davescj (Reply 64):

Spare us the sarcasm.

The pax family had notified the airline WELL in advance and the airline should have been able to prepare for or handle ANY of the hypothetical safety risks you prophets of doom, the pilot, and the airline apologists dream up, or the airline SHOULD NOT HAVE AGREED TO ACCEPT THE PAX to begin with.

But they knew if they did that, they'd be breaking the law.

Bottom line: Despite what many of you seem to believe and repeat over and over again, the Captain is NOT God! He/she CANNOT just arbitrarily overrule process and the laws, and impose his or her own view of what kind of pax is acceptable on the aircraft.

[Edited 2013-04-29 06:15:28]

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: kiwirob
Posted 2013-04-29 06:32:52 and read 7025 times.

Yet we allow people to board planes wearing full face coverings, I'd find it fare more uncomfortable sitting on a plane next to a faceless person than someone with an unfortunate mental issue shouting bomb.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-04-29 06:36:31 and read 7006 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 65):
Bottom line: Despite what many of you seem to believe and repeat over and over again, the Captain is NOT God! He/she CANNOT just arbitrarily overrule process and the laws, and impose his or her own view of what kind of pax is acceptable on the aircraft.

Even if we give the pilot the benefit of doubt here if he/she had not been adequately pre-briefed on this passenger and the background, the airline is still responsible for the situation occuring -- for not making adequate preparations for this pax's trip despite having accepted his fare and having been informed of his condition well in advance.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: btblue
Posted 2013-04-29 07:04:25 and read 6970 times.

Quoting davescj (Reply 64):

As I have thought about this, let me suggest the following (hypothetical) situation:

The man with TS boards, doesn't say anything, no announcement made (to protect his medical privacy).

After the boarding door closes, the aircraft pushes back.

Then the man loudly says BOMB.

The person next to him asks "OMG, is there a bomb on the plane?"

A person a few rows backs says "There's a bomb on the plane."

A person freaks out, opens an emergency door (say over the wing). The engines are running (possibly still). The cabin is in chaos.

Now what? You have a panicked cabin, possibly people trying to evacuate the cabin (not in the safest way), the whole airport is going to have issues.

Who would be responsible?

Dave

That's a good point but I see it this way.

Allocate tourette pax a seat.

Notify pax around him that he suffers from tourettes (the man will be familiar to this action - he himself fully aware how his disability can upset others).

Tell the pax he may well say something that will alarm them, but it is a disability and not of concern. Thank them for their understanding.

Not really that much of a big deal...

I flew to Mombasa over 10 years ago. There was a guy with tourettes onboard - people accepted it because they were educated enough to know what they were seeing and let it go.

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: blueflyer
Posted 2013-04-29 08:32:50 and read 6841 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 65):
the airline should have been able to prepare for or handle ANY of the hypothetical safety risks

        

You do realize that if airlines could plan for "ANY of the hypothetical safety risks" planes would never crash right? They know fuel tanks might explode, they know pilots may not have enough rest, they know weather might change abruptly, they know slick runways are much harder to stop on, etc...

So why on earth do planes EVER crash?
        

Topic: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-04-29 08:44:24 and read 6804 times.

Quoting ADent (Reply 61):
I don't understand how words can bring down the plane.


It is not about the plane crashing. Not everything is about the plane crashing. The mental health of passengers is imporant too. Again read some of the hypos we have posted already.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 62):
This incident had absolutely NOTHING to with safety, period! No point using that much abused "safety" term over and over again, it just does NOT apply in this case.

Yes it did. Even if you think there was no safety concern the captain did think there was and that is all that matters.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 62):
You have just completely contradicted your own words within the paragraph above itself. You have basically said that there ARE limits to the captain's ablity to determine who gets on and who does not. Discriminating based on race or sex is the example you provided. Discrimintation based on disability is exactly the same as per the law. By your own example, he should be fired and the airline sued.

NO I did not. You obviously have failed to read the law or read what some of us who know the law fairly well have posted about it. So I will do you a favor and go ahead and post some of it again since it seems you were too lazy to read it before.

49 U.S.C. 40127(a): An air carrier or foreign air carrier may not subject a person in air transportation to discrimination on the bias of race, or national origin, sex or ancestor.
(b) Permissive Refusal, “Might be inimical to safety”

There is NO liability unless the decisions shown to be arbitrary or capricious. Telling people they can't board due to race or sex is against the law. Telling someone they are not comfortable with the man boarding because he could cause concern in the cabin is not against the law. Notice having disability is not on there. Why? Because unfortunately sometimes a disability might be a valid reason to deny boarding. We have seen this happen before, we will see it happen again. The law has not changed and I doubt it will change.
Quoting sankaps (Reply 65):
The pax family had notified the airline WELL in advance and the airline should have been able to prepare for or handle ANY of the hypothetical safety risks you prophets of doom, the pilot, and the airline apologists dream up, or the airline SHOULD NOT HAVE AGREED TO ACCEPT THE PAX to begin with.

So the airline was suppose to predict the man would use the word bomb? We don't know what the family told the airline about his TS.
Quoting btblue (Reply 68):
Notify pax around him that he suffers from tourettes (the man will be familiar to this action - he himself fully aware how his disability can upset others).

Tell the pax he may well say something that will alarm them, but it is a disability and not of concern. Thank them for their understanding.

Not really that much of a big deal...

Now that is a big law suit. Just get on the PA and tell the whole airplane about a man with a disability. Why not just get on the airport PA too.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-04-29 08:47:55 and read 6810 times.

Quoting blueflyer (Reply 69):
You do realize that if airlines could plan for "ANY of the hypothetical safety risks" planes would never crash right? They know fuel tanks might explode, they know pilots may not have enough rest, they know weather might change abruptly, they know slick runways are much harder to stop on, etc...

Blueflyer -- though you be be rolling on the floor laughing, you actually are making my point perfectly. If booting this poor guy off the aircraft was because the captain felt there was some safety risk, however small, then we might as well give up on commercial aviaton altogether, right? Because there is always *some" risk when it comes to flying (as in other forms of human or mechanical activity), and one can never be 100% sure that everything will turn out fine.

Might as well have sent all the passengers home then?

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: blueshamu330s
Posted 2013-04-29 08:53:58 and read 6801 times.

Interesting situation.

It would appear the passenger and his companion did the right thing in alerting the airline and the TSA that Mr Doyle suffered from tourettes.

Quite correctly, the airline agreed to permit Mr Doyle to travel.

In normal circumstances, Mr Doyle would almost certainly have travelled uneventfully on board his booked JetBlue flight to Puerto Rico, albeit, possibly, with the occasional vocal outburst.

However, in the build up to their flight, two maniac terrorists decided to wreak havoc and carnage at the Boston Marathon by letting off home made bombs with appalling effect.

Mr Doyle was no doubt subjected to a barrage of media coverage and discussion regarding the Boston bombings and his tourettes latched, quite understandably, on to keywords such as 'bomb'.

This is where the 'normal' situation deviated into the one which resulted in him not being allowed to fly.

I understand the manifest listed Mr Doyle as a tourettes sufferer and that he was cleared to fly by the company.

However, with memories of Boston still in everyone's memory and raw, I do not find it unreasonable that passengers might have been anxious, worried or upset by a passenger shouting out the word 'bomb' at the gate area prior to boarding, nor passengers waiting for flights at adjacent gates. The suggestion that someone should have discretely advised passengers near to where Mr Doyle was seated on the plane is moot, as this occurred at the gate area. Had Jetblue made a PA announcement at the gate area, you can bet your backside they would now be facing a lawsuit for humiliation and discrimination.

I also find it quite justifiable that, having witnessed Mr Doyle's unfortunate outburst and seen the reaction of his fellow passengers, a gate agent might have felt it not only wise but a requirement of his job to notify the Captain that there was a tourettes passenger due to travel, that he had been cleared to fly by the company, but that he was shouting "bomb" and was making fellow passengers quite uneasy, possibly creating a scene at the gate.

Faced with that intelligence, I'm pretty sure what I would do. I'd walk back to the gate area, probably under the pretence of looking at something behind the podium, and self assess Mr Doyle's condition and how it is affecting not only him but the rest of the passengers, all of whom I am responsible for. A decision would have to be made, based on how I saw him and the other passengers at the gate, whether his conditional behaviour would be acceptable and sufficiently contained for a flight approaching 4 hours in duration.

In this instance, the Captain considered the evidence and decided to refuse him passage, which is entirely his right.

I feel desperately for people with a condition over which they have little or no control. However, just as people have claimed on here there is no rule saying you can't say 'bomb' at an airport, there equally is no rule saying everyone, no matter what disability, has a right to fly.

I lose some sympathy for his case for the fact Mr Doyle, having tourettes and who was already twitching the word 'bomb', did not show a little common sense and choose to cancel the trip. No matter that the trip had been in the planning stage for 2 years, he clearly already knew his condition was likely to cause problems, hence his pre-clearance request, so to turn up at the airport with the word 'bomb' on his mind was, to my mind, irresponsible and asking for trouble. That Jetblue had previously cleared him to fly is moot, as proceeding events had changed the goalposts somewhat and his condition was now more critical to his likelihood of being allowed to fly.

Unlike some rather robust posters on here, I find in favour of both the Captain and JetBlue. JetBlue did the right thing in initially agreeing to let him fly. I find the Captain made the right decision in the interests of all his passengers. JetBlue acknowledged the situation was caused not by Mr Doyle, but by events which conditioned his tourettes to latch on to the word 'bomb', and agreed to allow him to fly on another date, hopefully when his condition would not be so alarming or upsetting to other passengers.

That is not discrimination. That is simple, common sense.

Rgds

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: btblue
Posted 2013-04-29 09:09:17 and read 6750 times.

Quoting blueshamu330s (Reply 72):

Reading that, it is very hard to disagree.

Very eloquently put.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-04-29 09:13:01 and read 6737 times.

Quoting flymia (Reply 70):
You obviously have failed to read the law or read what some of us who know the law fairly well have posted about it. So I will do you a favor and go ahead and post some of it again since it seems you were too lazy to read it before.

49 U.S.C. 40127(a): An air carrier or foreign air carrier may not subject a person in air transportation to discrimination on the bias of race, or national origin, sex or ancestor.
(b) Permissive Refusal, “Might be inimical to safety”

There is NO liability unless the decisions shown to be arbitrary or capricious. Telling people they can't board due to race or sex is against the law. Telling someone they are not comfortable with the man boarding because he could cause concern in the cabin is not against the law. Notice having disability is not on there. Why? Because unfortunately sometimes a disability might be a valid reason to deny boarding. We have seen this happen before, we will see it happen again. The law has not changed and I doubt it will change.

Flymia, that is not the only regulation that can be quoted. You also have:

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 15):
http://www.tsa-usa.org/aPeople/LivingWithTS/Air_Travel.htm

"Indeed, there is only one reason you can legally be refused service by an airline in the US because of your disability. If you behave in a way that actually harms, or threatens to harm, others on the plane you can be refused boarding or removed from the flight. This rule applies to anyone who flies, of course, not just people with TS. If you worry that your tics might be misinterpreted as potentially dangerous (for example, if you have a thrusting arm or leg movement), that’s probably a good reason to contact the airline in advance to ensure that accommodations are in place."

Note the last sentence that many seem to have missed: The TSA says that "you can legally be refused service by an airline in the US because of your disability. If you behave in a way that actually harms, or threatens to harm, others on the plane you can be refused boarding or removed from the flight" but then advises the way to avoid this is by "contact[ing] the airline in advance to ensure that accommodations are in place", which is exactly what the family of this pax did.


I fully agree also with mjoelnir's observation below:

Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 15):

After a quick google search, i found that in 2008 a federal judge ruled the the ADA applies to both airports and airlines
Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 18):
Have you really read that link?

Not a lot of gray in this area!
"The Seligman case also established that the ACAA applies to people with TS specifically, regardless of the nature or severity of their tics, including major body movements and coprolalia. Your tics may be annoying or even offensive to someone on the flight, but unless they are actually dangerous, you are covered."

There is even a Complaint Resolution Officer who has do be immediately available.
Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 21):
Another quote from http://www.tsa-usa.org/aPeople/LivingWithTS/Air_Travel.htm :

"You may find that not all airline employees are as aware of their responsibilities as they should be. Accordingly, if you suspect your TS might draw unwelcome attention from either airline employees or fellow passengers, you need to know and assert your rights."

The right of the passenger is mentioned here, not the right of the captain or crew to refuse the passenger the right to fly.

If only the poor guy with TS were permitted to explain and assert his rights. But of course in the airline industry in the US today, asserting anything to airline staff would have you in even more trouble!

[Edited 2013-04-29 09:24:04]

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: airtechy
Posted 2013-04-29 09:30:06 and read 6690 times.

Given that the airline had prior been alerted to this man's medical condition, could not the airline have anticipated a problem might arise and given the captain.....as he would be the final arbitrator of any problem....some guidance on how to handle it. Seems like "thinking out a solution in advance" would have been a good idea. After all, the passenger himself anticipated a problem.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-04-29 09:44:28 and read 6666 times.

Quoting flymia (Reply 70):
Now that is a big law suit. Just get on the PA and tell the whole airplane about a man with a disability. Why not just get on the airport PA too.

The airline was pre-informed by the family. They could have discussed this scenario with the family. They may not have objected to a sensibly-worded announcement, or may have suggested how it had been handled in previous situations (assuming it was not the first flight for this pax).

One can be certain though that jetBlue will have a SOP for this going forward to they handle it better next time. This time it seems like informing them in advance achieved exactly zero.

[Edited 2013-04-29 09:52:07]

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: blueflyer
Posted 2013-04-29 10:41:51 and read 6586 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 71):
Might as well have sent all the passengers home then?

When one passenger decreases the safety level for all passengers, you don't send all the passengers home, you stop that one passenger from getting on...

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: FCAFLYBOY
Posted 2013-04-29 10:56:56 and read 6579 times.

Quoting blueshamu330s (Reply 72):

I was being strongly guided to agree with you until this point.
Why on earth should he cancel a trip that had been planned for TWO YEARS
for fear of upsetting passengers, for something he only MIGHT do?

I also very much doubt he arrived at th airport with 'Bomb' on his mind, and even if he did, it's beyond proof.

Make no mistake, there is no Moot point on jetBlue's behalf - they cleared him to fly then denied him for the very same reason.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-04-29 10:58:41 and read 6569 times.

Quoting blueflyer (Reply 77):
When one passenger decreases the safety level for all passengers, you don't send all the passengers home, you stop that one passenger from getting on...

You missed the point. Sending the one pax home does not eliminate safety risk from the flight altogether, because as you so eloquently pointed out yourself, "fuel tanks might explode, they know pilots may not have enough rest, they know weather might change abruptly, they know slick runways are much harder to stop on, etc...".

So why stop at eliminating one remote risk, of a pax with TS somehow causing a safety situation to occur? How many aircraft have pax with TS brought down or caused serious safety incidents on, compared to all the other risks you point out? Why fly at all?

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: FCAFLYBOY
Posted 2013-04-29 11:03:42 and read 6570 times.

Quoting blueshamu330s (Reply 72):

I was being strongly guided to agree with you until this point.
Why on earth should he cancel a trip that had been planned for TWO YEARS
for fear of upsetting passengers, for something he only MIGHT do?

I also very much doubt he arrived at th airport with 'Bomb' on his mind, and even if he did, it's beyond proof.

Make no mistake, there is no Moot point on jetBlue's behalf - they cleared him to fly then denied him for the very same reason.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: blueshamu330s
Posted 2013-04-29 14:58:54 and read 6447 times.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 78):
I was being strongly guided to agree with you until this point.
Why on earth should he cancel a trip that had been planned for TWO YEARS
for fear of upsetting passengers, for something he only MIGHT do?

As you didn't highlight any of my previous post, I'm not sure how far I got before I lost your support, so I'll address the question you raise; why should he cancel the trip he had been planning for two years?

It really is quite simple. He has a condition which is known to be unstable and unpredictable. It wasn't a case of cancelling for something he only MIGHT do, to quote you. All the articles I've read have been pretty clear. He was ticking the word bomb prior to arriving at the airport. In the first article linked, he also states he was ticking the word bomb as they went through security.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 78):
I also very much doubt he arrived at th airport with 'Bomb' on his mind, and even if he did, it's beyond proof.

Quoting from various reports suggests otherwise:

ABC News:

Quote:
Doyle, 19, said he arrived at Washington, D.C.’s Reagan National Airport Thursday with medical documentation describing his condition.

“I was telling myself in my head before don’t say bomb. When you try to suppress Tourette’s, it comes out even worse,” said Michael Doyle.
Quote:
Those with Tourette syndrome often can’t control verbal tics. Doyle, who constantly watched coverage of the Boston Marathon bombings, said he arrived at the airport worried about what he was going to say.
“I probably said bomb about 100 times in that terminal, and through TSA,” Doyle said.
Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 78):
Make no mistake, there is no Moot point on jetBlue's behalf - they cleared him to fly then denied him for the very same reason.

It is not as black and white as you suggest and I can not agree with you. At the risk of repeating myself, but for clarity, Mr Doyle, quite correctly advised both JetBlue and the TSA of his intention to fly and of his condition.

Quite correctly, the airline agreed to permit Mr Doyle to travel.

In normal circumstances, Mr Doyle would almost certainly have travelled uneventfully on board his booked JetBlue flight to Puerto Rico, albeit, possibly, with the occasional vocal outburst.

The situation changed after the Boston Marathon;

Quoting blueshamu330s (Reply 72):
No matter that the trip had been in the planning stage for 2 years, he clearly already knew his condition was likely to cause problems, hence his pre-clearance request, so to turn up at the airport with the word 'bomb' on his mind was, to my mind, irresponsible and asking for trouble. That Jetblue had previously cleared him to fly is moot, as proceeding events had changed the goalposts somewhat and his condition was now more critical to his likelihood of being allowed to fly.

Rgds

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: rwy04lga
Posted 2013-04-29 15:28:44 and read 6395 times.

Quoting kiwirob (Reply 66):
Yet we allow people to board planes wearing full face coverings

After they've been personally screened in a private booth by a female TSA agent. To the satisfaction of the agent, the passenger is allowed to continue on her journey. I'm not aware of a reason for men to cover their faces. If there is, I'm sure there is an equally appropriate TSA procedure for the men.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: zkokq
Posted 2013-04-29 15:43:50 and read 6378 times.

Christ, if Tourettes syndrome is enough for a PIC to feel uneasy, lets just forfiet flying altogether then.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-29 19:07:43 and read 6268 times.

Some here still think no law was broken.

A law was broken called ACAA. It is not just any law, it is a law about airlines and aircrews not being able to discriminate against disabled people. The ACAA is a law regarding aviation, so it is no use talking about ADA does not apply, ACAA applies.

I do not know about the handling of this case by the airline, they were informed beforehand about somebody with TS would travel on this flight. If the airline did inform crew and captain before this flight about this passenger, than I can not accuse the airline, if they did not inform them of this passenger than somebody did drop the ball.

Over to the captain.

I think we have to accept the right of the pilot to make all decisions regarding his aeroplane and how he conducts his flight.
That said, a captain is not above critic about the decisions he makes.

Some say here there is a difference about not allowing for example a black person or red haired person to fly, that would be discrimination and in this case a person with TS, that would not be discrimination.
ACAA says otherwise, both cases are discrimination.

The question is, did the safety escape clause in the ACAA give the captain a good enough excuse for bailing out of transporting this passenger?
Many here are of the opinion yes, I am off the opinion no.

The captain should have been informed about the passenger before the flight, he should know about the possibility of an person with TS talking nonsense without being able to control themselves. There should not have been the necessity to make a decision on the fly.
The possibility that a person with TS starts suddenly uttering the wrong words anytime before or during the flight is a given, if that is enough to exclude that person from flying, than we do exactly what the ACCA tries to avoid, that is discriminating against disabled persons.

I still think the captain made the wrong call.
Should he be drawn and quartered and thrown out of his profession? No, he has the right to make such calls.
Are we aloud to critic his calls? Yes that is the only way bringing us forward.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Av8tor
Posted 2013-04-29 19:34:38 and read 6226 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 65):
Bottom line: Despite what many of you seem to believe and repeat over and over again, the Captain is NOT God! He/she CANNOT just arbitrarily overrule process and the laws, and impose his or her own view of what kind of pax is acceptable on the aircraft.

Uh.... Yes he can.

"Under U.S. FAA FAR 91.3, "Responsibility and authority of the pilot in command", the FAA declares:[4]
(a) The pilot in command of an aircraft is directly responsible for, and is the final authority as to, the operation of that aircraft."


"In Annex 2, par. "2.4 Authority of pilot-in-command of an aircraft", ICAO adds:[1]


The pilot-in-command of an aircraft shall have final authority as to the disposition of the aircraft while in command."

No one is going to be able to challenge his final decision. Period.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-04-29 19:44:56 and read 6208 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 84):
A law was broken called ACAA.

Again, as a Complaint Resolution Official with a major U.S. airline, no violation of 14 CFR 382 (the ACAA) occurred in this instance.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: silentbob
Posted 2013-04-29 20:05:10 and read 6172 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 84):
A law was broken called ACAA.

No, it wasn't. You can keep beating a dead horse all you want, but it doesn't change the reality of the situation.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-29 20:23:36 and read 6140 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 86):
Again, as a Complaint Resolution Official with a major U.S. airline, no violation of 14 CFR 382 (the ACAA) occurred in this instance.

I absolutely do not agree with you, airlines have bailed out of transporting passengers with TS before, usually it has ended in a settlement as mostly the airlines were not prepared to go to court.

What happened is typical for TS and if that is enough to not transport them, how can you ever allow a person with TS onboard an airplane?

If I should take your statement serious, than I would like to know how you would go about letting somebody with TS fly.

If you know about TS, you would know this to be typical case of what could come up.

So how do you fulfill the ACAA, if the resolution is, people with TS does have no right to fly, ACAA would be pretty useless.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: twiga
Posted 2013-04-29 21:02:24 and read 6099 times.

The Seligman case also established that the ACAA applies to people with TS specifically, regardless of the nature or severity of their tics, including major body movements and coprolalia. Your tics may be annoying or even offensive to someone on the flight, but unless they are "actually dangerous", you are covered.

Indeed, there is only one reason you can legally be refused service by an airline in the US because of your disability. If you behave in a way that actually harms, or threatens to harm, others on the plane you can be refused boarding or removed from the flight. This rule applies to anyone who flies, of course, not just people with TS. If you worry that your tics might be misinterpreted as potentially dangerous (for example, if you have a thrusting arm or leg movement), that’s probably a good reason to contact the airline in advance to ensure that accommodations are in place.

Every medical condition has degrees of severity. Measured on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being very mild, and 10 being extremly severe. In the first paragraph "actually dangerous" in whoes assessment? The person with TS as this seems to imply? The airline employee previously contacted on the phone? How are they to assess the degree of severity with regard to potential danger? Once on the aircraft surely the pilot has the ultimate resposibility and call - he has to assess for "potential to actual danger" because if he waits for the acting out of danger once the aircraft is airborne its too late.
The same line of questions applies to the second paragraph. Ultimately its the pilots call and he is expected to be proactive. There is alot of grey area here - I'm discussing the 7 to 10 severity for example continued shouting out at the 80 decible level.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Quokkas
Posted 2013-04-29 21:09:23 and read 6098 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 84):
A law was broken called ACAA.

The law that you keep quoting does include a provision for lawfully refusing service, as has been pointed out. As it happens, the airline did offer a return trip on another flight but could not guarantee that the same would not happen in future. The call on whether to allow someone to fly has to be made on the basis of a person's condition and behaviour on the day of travel. Was the Captain right in this instance? I don't know as I wasn't there.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 84):
both cases are discrimination.

The two may be discriminatory but not all forms of discrimination are unlawful. There is nothing inherent in a person being black or having red hair that is likely to pose a risk so it would be both unreasonable and unlawful in the circumstances to ban them.

But in some circumstances tics can be a risk to other passengers. That is something that would have to be assessed on an individual basis. The law does provide for exceptions but it would be unlawful if the airline adopted a policy of not carrying passengers with TS simply because they had TS. Clearly the airline does not have such a policy.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 88):
So how do you fulfill the ACAA, if the resolution is, people with TS does have no right to fly,

A person with TS has no less a right to fly than any other passenger, provided it is safe to do so for both the passenger and other passengers and crew. In this instance the airline offered to a return trip on another date. That doesn't overcome the problem that the guy missed the re-enactment that he was looking forward to but it does indicate that more than a simple refund is offered.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Schweigend
Posted 2013-04-29 21:32:34 and read 6076 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 86):
Again, as a Complaint Resolution Official with a major U.S. airline, no violation of 14 CFR 382 (the ACAA) occurred in this instance.

Thanks for providing clarity for the wayward....

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 84):
The captain should have been informed about the passenger before the flight, he should know about the possibility of an person with TS talking nonsense without being able to control themselves.

Spouting typical Tourette's nonsense ("Quatsch" as Germans say) can be unpleasant to others, but is endurable.

Saying "bomb" over a hundred times is not nonsense to travelers in an airport. The man's fellow passengers would naturally be disturbed by this, and some of them might even be tempted to subdue him inflight, if he had continued the behavior -- as many U.S. pax are now prepared to do post-9/11 in the event of a perceived threat. This could create an unsafe condition in the cabin, and the TS sufferer himself could have been at risk for injury. The captain's action might actually have saved this pax from a potentially awful scene onboard.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 88):
What happened is typical for TS and if that is enough to not transport them, how can you ever allow a person with TS onboard an airplane?

It really depends on how the TS sufferer affects the other people trapped in that aluminum tube with him. While the TS person might not actually be a flight risk in and of himself, the people around him might react in a way that ultimately is unsafe. The PIC must take these things into account when making what is the very tough decision to deny boarding.

Cheers

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-04-29 21:41:58 and read 6053 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 88):
I absolutely do not agree with you, airlines have bailed out of transporting passengers with TS before, usually it has ended in a settlement as mostly the airlines were not prepared to go to court

98% of all civil cases in the U.S. either settle or fail on their merits. Cases settling mean nothing and airlines settle because it is cheaper than going to trial. Look up the case law of the limited aviation cases about discretionary decisions by the PIC in refusing boarding or kicking passengers off planes. There are very few which the airline/captain were wrong and the passenger wins. Very few if any.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-29 21:48:17 and read 6044 times.

Quoting Quokkas (Reply 90):

Other forms of discrimination do occur, a group of moslems were deplaned in the US because they were praying in Arabic before the flight and passengers got afraid.

The ACAA actually makes discrimination against disabled people unlawful, discrimination is always unlawful.

Exclusion for safety reasons are and should be an exception, not the norm.
This "lawful" refusal has been challenged, it is not a catch all.

When you have a Person with TS you have to calculate with exactly the behavior what happened, I would say still a rather mild case, nobody seems to talk about screaming and 80 decibels, according to my information he was not screaming but just saying the word.

If the ACAA includes TS, and that is my understanding, this is exactly what everybody has to expect.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Schweigend
Posted 2013-04-29 21:53:29 and read 6038 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 93):
...according to my information he was not screaming but just saying the word.

Just saying that word is enough -- no matter the volume.

And in the end, both he and the flight he wasn't on were safe.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-29 22:14:17 and read 5997 times.

Quoting Schweigend (Reply 94):
Just saying that word is enough -- no matter the volume.

Just this opinion would make me hope that he sues.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: blueflyer
Posted 2013-04-29 22:18:14 and read 6008 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 88):
If you know about TS, you would know this to be typical case of what could come up.

Are you seriously arguing that screaming "bomb" in a terminal is typical of Tourette?

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 84):
A law was broken called ACAA.

The ACAA itself includes an exception on the ground of safety in article §382.31 (d) as mentioned above. What is this exception good for if it cannot be used? If not now, then when does this article apply?

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 88):
So how do you fulfill the ACAA, if the resolution is, people with TS does have no right to fly, ACAA would be pretty useless.

No one has said people with Tourette have no right to fly, the issue is over someone screaming "bomb" in a terminal.

To a certain extent, the fact that the passenger has Tourette is secondary, he was denied boarding because he couldn't stop himself from screaming "bomb" repeatedly in the terminal. Tourette is the reason he couldn't control himself, but not the reason he was denied boarding.

Thousands of people with various disabilities, including Tourette, fly every day thanks to the ACAA. Stating that the ACAA is useless because one passenger was denied boarding is taking it a bit too far.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-04-29 22:20:36 and read 6008 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 88):
Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 86):
Again, as a Complaint Resolution Official with a major U.S. airline, no violation of 14 CFR 382 (the ACAA) occurred in this instance.

I absolutely do not agree with you

I don't know what else to tell you, then; disagree all you want but my extensive, annual training on the implementation of the very ACAA you keep throwing out there says otherwise.

Yes, Tourette's Syndrome is a disability, and a customer cannot be refused transport on the sole basis of a disability unless there is an aspect that compromises safety. Note I didn't say "the safety of others" or "the safety of the aircraft" but safety in general. See below:

Quoting Schweigend (Reply 91):
Saying "bomb" over a hundred times is not nonsense to travelers in an airport. The man's fellow passengers would naturally be disturbed by this, and some of them might even be tempted to subdue him inflight, if he had continued the behavior -- as many U.S. pax are now prepared to do post-9/11 in the event of a perceived threat. This could create an unsafe condition in the cabin, and the TS sufferer himself could have been at risk for injury.

  

The customer's specific manifestation of his Tourette's Syndrome on that day made it possible that having him fly that day could have rendered him a safety risk to himself, and the time to make that assessment isn't in a pressurized metal tube hurtling through the sky at hundreds of miles per hour, six to seven miles above the earth.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 93):
according to my information he was not screaming but just saying the word.


Saying it repeatedly.

I think you can appreciate that subtle difference does make a world of difference in terms of the perception by others.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-29 22:29:18 and read 5986 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 97):

If you have the training, you should know that this is a lame excuse.

If you know TS this is a behavior to expect, he could have started of in the tube up in the air.

"Your tics may be annoying or even offensive to someone on the flight, but unless they are "actually dangerous", you are covered"

I am pretty sure that you interpretation would sink like a stone in a court of law.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Quokkas
Posted 2013-04-29 22:35:40 and read 5982 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 93):
discrimination is always unlawful.

Wrong. The very fact that there are exceptions prove that in some instances discrimination is lawful. The room for lawful discrimination may be narrow but it still exists.

While this incident may be the subject of a legal challenge it has yet to be determined if the discrimination was unlawful. If it was then the airline may face some penalty. But even if the airline is deemed to have exhibited unlawful discrimination in this particular instance, that does not mean that every incident in future would be ruled unlawful. The facts of the matter would be considered on their merit.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: FCAFLYBOY
Posted 2013-04-29 22:42:05 and read 5975 times.

Quoting blueshamu330s (Reply 72):

Sorry it was at this point in your post that I switched off. Stupid iPhone.

I don't disagree th captain has the final say, I just don't think someone at B6 handled this well
and it was all totally unnecessary. Someone got it wrong, there is never an excuse for discrimination.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-29 22:56:54 and read 5953 times.

Quoting Quokkas (Reply 99):
Wrong. The very fact that there are exceptions prove that in some instances discrimination is lawful. The room for lawful discrimination may be narrow but it still exists.

Wrong, the exception for safety concerns does not make the discrimination lawful.

The exception is an exception, the principle is: discrimination is unlawful.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-04-30 03:16:13 and read 5853 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 101):
Quoting Quokkas (Reply 99):Wrong. The very fact that there are exceptions prove that in some instances discrimination is lawful. The room for lawful discrimination may be narrow but it still exists.
Wrong, the exception for safety concerns does not make the discrimination lawful.

Wrong, the exception for safety concerns means it's no longer considered discrimination.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: kiwirob
Posted 2013-04-30 03:45:40 and read 5834 times.

Quoting rwy04lga (Reply 82):
After they've been personally screened in a private booth by a female TSA agent. To the satisfaction of the agent, the passenger is allowed to continue on her journey. I'm not aware of a reason for men to cover their faces. If there is, I'm sure there is an equally appropriate TSA procedure for the men.

That might be the case in the US but it isn't elsewhere, I've followed many fully veiled women through security in many countries and never yet seen one be pulled aside for special screening except in Russia where immigration refused to allow the women into the country until she had removed her covering.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: skywaymanaz
Posted 2013-04-30 04:35:03 and read 5783 times.

I see a lot of responses in the thread here that some feel the crew should have made an announcement explaining the man's condition so it was not a concern. Even if the man consented to this it would almost certainly be a violation of the HIPAA act if the crew did that. Whatever information given to the airline about his condition is covered in the sections relating to keeping that information private and secure. I really feel for this individual because he and his family took what should have been reasonable steps to prevent this from happening. Unfortunately with the Boston Marathon bombing being so frequently mentioned in the news it was difficult for him to keep that one word, "bomb", out his tics. If his tics were, "Oh boy" over and over, which even I've said a few times when frustrated, I'd be outraged if the result was to kick him off. It may be there was bigotry or stupidity or both on the part of the flight crew. I extremely doubt it though given the efforts made by the family for reasonable accommodation. That's just something you can not say though on an airplane period even if beyond your control. jetBlue was between a rock and a hard place on this one but unfortunately having him off the plane was the lesser of all other evils. If that seems harsh then look at it this way, if the tic was to repeat a racial epithet over and over are you going to remove the passenger with the tic or the passenger with that ethnic background. Pilot in Command has the authority to make that decision and it is absolute. I'd really hate to have to make that call but if I was in the Captain's shoes that's the call I'd probably have made too. We can, and in this case probably will, argue about it later in court.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-04-30 05:23:36 and read 5737 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 98):
I am pretty sure that you interpretation would sink like a stone in a court of law.

No it would not. His expert opinion would most likely be successful. Look at the laws then look at the case law. Again your opinion is just that an opinion and it's a weak one when looking at the facts, law and case precedent.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: jonathan-l
Posted 2013-04-30 05:27:04 and read 5736 times.

Quoting Jpax (Reply 9):
150 other passengers do not deserve to be terrified the entire flight because of a teenager yelling bomb.

There you have it: that's the real issue. Is it normal that the word "bomb" ignites this sense of fright?
Despite our moaning against TSA, we trust them to keep bombs off flights. So if the guy doesn't say anything, we trust he's clean. If he says something, all of a sudden we fear he migh tactually have a bomb on board when he's gone through the same security checks.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: 777STL
Posted 2013-04-30 07:55:16 and read 5634 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 10):

Nobody talked about yelling.
The airline accepted the passenger knowing his condition.

When it is not for a defined safety reason it is arbitrary.

So you'd feel completely safe with someone randomly blurting out "Bomb!" on your flight? Remember, hindsight is 20/20, in this situation you would have no idea that he has Tourettes.

The captain of this flight more than likely isn't a trained mental health professional. How is he supposed to determine who is a threat and who is just a mental patient with a penchant for blurting out inappropriate language?

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 97):
Yes, Tourette's Syndrome is a disability, and a customer cannot be refused transport on the sole basis of a disability unless there is an aspect that compromises safety. Note I didn't say "the safety of others" or "the safety of the aircraft" but safety in general. See below:

It's really quite simple, it's *not* discrimination, he was not kicked off of that aircraft solely because he has Tourettes. He was kicked off because he violated the safety and comfort of others on that flight because of his uncontrolled, inflammatory outbursts.



Quoting blueflyer (Reply 96):
Tourette is the reason he couldn't control himself, but not the reason he was denied boarding.

Exactly. He was kicked off the aircraft because of his behavior, not because he has Tourette's.

Only on a.net would some child think that someone screaming "bomb" before boarding an aircraft is a perfectly normal, acceptable behavior. I've seen it all now!

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-04-30 08:48:02 and read 5586 times.

Quoting 777STL (Reply 107):
So you'd feel completely safe with someone randomly blurting out "Bomb!" on your flight? Remember, hindsight is 20/20, in this situation you would have no idea that he has Tourettes.

As stated by many, the crew could have discreetly advised the other pax / asked the family if it was okay to make a polite announcement so that others would have a cleat idea that this was just a medical condition, as has been done in other similar situations mentioned earlier in the thread.

Quoting 777STL (Reply 107):
The captain of this flight more than likely isn't a trained mental health professional. How is he supposed to determine who is a threat and who is just a mental patient with a penchant for blurting out inappropriate language?

That is why the pax family followed TSA guidelines and *informed the airline weeks in advance of this situation* so they and their crew would be prepared, and not be taken by surprise.

Quoting 777STL (Reply 107):
Exactly. He was kicked off the aircraft because of his behavior, not because he has Tourette's.

His behaviour is directly driven by TS. It is like saying "he was thrown off the aircraft for not walking on his own feet, not because he is crippled".

Quoting 777STL (Reply 107):
Only on a.net would some child think that someone screaming "bomb" before boarding an aircraft is a perfectly normal, acceptable behavior. I've seen it all now!

Only in the US airline industry would people / sheeple be so paranoid that they believe kicking pax off of aircraft for the slightest perceived or imagined threat despite ample advance information being provided is perfectly normal, acceptable behaviour, thereby ensuring the terrorists have indeed won. The rest of the world is seeing this sadly.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: twiga
Posted 2013-04-30 12:55:59 and read 5482 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 108):
As stated by many, the crew could have discreetly advised the other pax / asked the family if it was okay to make a polite announcement so that others would have a cleat idea that this was just a medical condition, as has been done in other similar situations mentioned earlier in the thread.
Quoting sankaps (Reply 108):
That is why the pax family followed TSA guidelines and *informed the airline weeks in advance of this situation* so they and their crew would be prepared, and not be taken by surprise.

Sankaps, I generally agree with what you are saying provided we are discussing relatively mild disorders of TS. But extreme disorders as I previously categorized (don't profess to be an expert) in that 7 - 10 range may need other considerations. Everybody seems to be generalizing everything and talking past one another. Put in another way one person is discussing TS at Category 2 level and the next is disagreeing because they are discussing at Category 7 level, when in actual fact they would probably agree if they were discussing at the same level. There are certainly alot of grey areas here. Anyway thats my thoughts on this matter.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Western727
Posted 2013-04-30 13:11:51 and read 5488 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 108):
Only in the US airline industry would people / sheeple be so paranoid that they believe kicking pax off of aircraft for the slightest perceived or imagined threat despite ample advance information being provided is perfectly normal, acceptable behaviour, thereby ensuring the terrorists have indeed won. The rest of the world is seeing this sadly.

The notion that Ethiopian wouldn't do the same at, say, ADD, AF at CDG and Emirates at DXB is laughable.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: silentbob
Posted 2013-04-30 13:51:59 and read 5475 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 108):
His behaviour is directly driven by TS. It is like saying "he was thrown off the aircraft for not walking on his own feet, not because he is crippled".

If he was yelling "peanut butter" or "potato", there is no problem. You can't yell "bomb" on an airplane, just like you can't yell "fire" in a crowded theater.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: longhauler
Posted 2013-04-30 15:47:38 and read 5459 times.

I have been following this thread with a lot of interest, as with most threads I often wonder what I would do in such a case. Removing a passenger is always the last resort, and although justified I have always regretting the instances I have had to do this. I've often wondered if maybe there wasn't something we could have done to avoid the removal.

There are very valid points on both sides in this thread.

I think if I were presented with this, I would have contacted our Station Operations Control, (discreetly by telephone, not radio) and ask/confirm that the passenger has been medically cleared. I would then advise what the passenger was presently doing, and is this symptomatic of the medical condition. (They would contact our physicians).

If they are all happy with this, I would then approach the Service Director. (Head of the cabin staff). Tell them the passenger is medically cleared, what symptoms to expect ... and what are their thoughts?

Armed with this information, I would then likely allow the passenger to fly.

I am a smart guy. Far too many university degrees for my own good. But ... I am also smart enough to know what I don't know. For that I defer to the experts. It appears, the experts had cleared this passenger to fly.

I would also imagine, that decision the Captain made, was not made alone. Very likely with additional information (yelling bomb), someone else also suggested the passenger not fly. It's a tough call. But as a Captain myself, I am certain that the Captain while not regretting his decision, is sorry the passenger was not able to fly.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-04-30 16:28:08 and read 5424 times.

Quoting longhauler (Reply 112):
It appears, the experts had cleared this passenger to fly.

You're absolutely right. However the conditions under which he was cleared had changed between the time of the booking and the time he'd presented himself at the airport for boarding. That's the issue.

Instead of ticking with random words, he was now ticking with a word that, uttered repeatedly on a commercial aircraft, could have placed him in jeopardy of being on the receiving end of a physical confrontation from his fellow passengers.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-30 18:22:19 and read 5368 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 113):
You're absolutely right. However the conditions under which he was cleared had changed between the time of the booking and the time he'd presented himself at the airport for boarding. That's the issue.

Instead of ticking with random words, he was now ticking with a word that, uttered repeatedly on a commercial aircraft, could have placed him in jeopardy of being on the receiving end of a physical confrontation from his fellow passengers.

You seem not to understand about TS. Perhaps you should read up on it.

There was no change, the word is random, it can be any word or words, that is the point.

You can not define what the person with TS will say, he can not define and or control what he will say, perhaps he starts saying a word, perhaps not, it is exactly that, random.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-04-30 19:08:17 and read 5328 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 108):
As stated by many, the crew could have discreetly advised the other pax / asked the family if it was okay to make a polite announcement so that others would have a cleat idea that this was just a medical condition, as has been done in other similar situations mentioned earlier in the thread.

You keep on saying this but you are not looking at it carefully enough. Not even a Doctor would go on the loud speaker or tell passengers near by, " By the way this guy has TS, that's why he might say the word bomb a lot or other words." I guess if the passenger himself wanted to say it that would be ok but even if the crew reccomended this or actually told other passengers they would be heading towards a HUGE lawsuit. You really think an airline employee would start telling other passengers about this man's medical condition??

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 114):

He himself said that he was saying the word bomb because of all the news on the Boston bombing This word was not random according the passenger himself. According to him the words that come out involuntary are words that are one his mind.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-30 19:26:31 and read 5320 times.

Quoting flymia (Reply 115):
He himself said that he was saying the word bomb because of all the news on the Boston bombing This word was not random according the passenger himself. According to him the words that come out involuntary are words that are one his mind.

If you can predict what you think about tomorrow morning I agree, but could it be that what you read in the morning paper tomorrow morning could have an influence what you are thinking about tomorrow morning?

In so far it is random, anything the person may be thinking about at that moment.

We can change the word from random to unpredictable if you like that better.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-04-30 19:35:35 and read 5308 times.

I think that this talk about an announcement of his condition could not be done, is just an excuse.

If you have a guy in a wheelchair, and you say, everybody out of the isle because we have to move a person in a wheelchair first you do not infringe on his rights, it is obvious that the person is in a wheelchair.

TS is exactly not a silently private condition, it is a very obvious condition, both the movements and/or the vocals will be obvious, so it is usually better to explain in advance so people understand.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-04-30 19:48:52 and read 5293 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 116):
We can change the word from random to unpredictable if you like that better.

I can agree with that.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 117):
I think that this talk about an announcement of his condition could not be done, is just an excuse.

I am not saying it could not be done. All I am saying is no way would an airline employee do it.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: jagflyer
Posted 2013-04-30 19:50:07 and read 5304 times.

For those of you who say removing the passenger was wrong and discrimination based on disability, how would you handle these scenarios:

-A severely autistic or developmentally delayed adult begins repeatedly exposing their genitals disrupting the surrounding passengers? He knows no better and does not understand why he cannot do this.

-A passenger boards with a lighter and proceeds to light it during boarding. When told to stop, the passenger will not stop despite the flight attendants requesting them to several times. This passenger is obviously mentally ill and does not comprehend or understand the idea of a higher authority figure explaining the legal/safety reasons to not do it.

The JetBlue passenger who was removed was not discriminated against based solely on the fact that he was disabled. His removal was due to his behaviour and the words he used which was bound to arouse suspicion from other passengers. If he started blurting out "damn yankees" or "civil war" I doubt the outcome would have been the same.

[Edited 2013-04-30 19:54:23]

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-05-01 01:18:46 and read 5055 times.

Quoting silentbob (Reply 111):
If he was yelling "peanut butter" or "potato", there is no problem. You can't yell "bomb" on an airplane, just like you can't yell "fire" in a crowded theater.

Sure you can yell Fire in a crowded theatre as long as you announce / pre-warn the audience that this is about to happen, it is not a real fire, and there is no need to be alarmed. Just like in a fire safety drill.

Quoting longhauler (Reply 112):
I have been following this thread with a lot of interest, as with most threads I often wonder what I would do in such a case. Removing a passenger is always the last resort, and although justified I have always regretting the instances I have had to do this. I've often wondered if maybe there wasn't something we could have done to avoid the removal.

There are very valid points on both sides in this thread.

I think if I were presented with this, I would have contacted our Station Operations Control, (discreetly by telephone, not radio) and ask/confirm that the passenger has been medically cleared. I would then advise what the passenger was presently doing, and is this symptomatic of the medical condition. (They would contact our physicians).

If they are all happy with this, I would then approach the Service Director. (Head of the cabin staff). Tell them the passenger is medically cleared, what symptoms to expect ... and what are their thoughts?

Armed with this information, I would then likely allow the passenger to fly.

I am a smart guy. Far too many university degrees for my own good. But ... I am also smart enough to know what I don't know. For that I defer to the experts. It appears, the experts had cleared this passenger to fly.

Exactly, Longhauler, you have hit the nail on the head. This is the whole reason the airline was informed about the condition well in advance.

Quoting flymia (Reply 115):
You keep on saying this but you are not looking at it carefully enough. Not even a Doctor would go on the loud speaker or tell passengers near by, " By the way this guy has TS, that's why he might say the word bomb a lot or other words." I guess if the passenger himself wanted to say it that would be ok but even if the crew reccomended this or actually told other passengers they would be heading towards a HUGE lawsuit. You really think an airline employee would start telling other passengers about this man's medical condition??

You keep saying "HUGE lawsuit" but you have no real basis to claim this. The airline could just ask the family to sign a waiver / document saying they permit it. Why is everyone assuming the family would object, especially since they themselves pre-warned the airline about it? They could just have been told, "No problem, but in certain situations we are required to make an anouncement so that other passengers don't misunderstand, and can you please sign this document saying it is okay with you". That's all!

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 117):
I think that this talk about an announcement of his condition could not be done, is just an excuse.

If you have a guy in a wheelchair, and you say, everybody out of the isle because we have to move a person in a wheelchair first you do not infringe on his rights, it is obvious that the person is in a wheelchair.

Exactly!

Quoting jagflyer (Reply 119):
-A severely autistic or developmentally delayed adult begins repeatedly exposing their genitals disrupting the surrounding passengers? He knows no better and does not understand why he cannot do this.

-A passenger boards with a lighter and proceeds to light it during boarding. When told to stop, the passenger will not stop despite the flight attendants requesting them to several times. This passenger is obviously mentally ill and does not comprehend or understand the idea of a higher authority figure explaining the legal/safety reasons to not do it.

Are these conditions known in advance and has the airline been pre-warned so that they have the change to determine how to handle? There are ways to handle both situations with pre-planning. And the lighter is a real safety threat, should not be allowed on board, and is in no way analogous to a TS person saying certain words. Words can't bring down an aircraft. In any case, even in this situation the lighter can just be removed by security personnel , and the pax allowed to remain.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Kaiarahi
Posted 2013-05-01 05:39:41 and read 4901 times.

Quoting longhauler (Reply 112):

Thank you for your (as always) thoughtful post. I have refrained from posting on this thread, as I have a son with TS and the misconceptions posted by some here are little short of hideous. My son is a successful surgeon - many TS sufferers also have varying degrees of obsessive-compulsive behaviour and extraordinary fine-motor skills, which are well-suited to tasks such as delicate surgery.

A few pertinent points:

- Verbal tics (note the spelling - 'ticks' are what give you Lyme disease) very rarely involve yelling. They are usually expressed in a conversational tone or even under one's breath.

- TS sufferers are used to, and generally welcome, telling those around them who may be affected by their behaviour that they have TS and what to expect.

- My son describes trying to suppress a tic as like trying to suppress a hiccup - the harder you try, the worse it gets.

- There is no effective medication for TS.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: ajd1992
Posted 2013-05-01 05:58:50 and read 4861 times.

Quoting toobz (Reply 11):

Jpax sport on. Nobody is cheering the captain on but he has a responsibility to make sure everyone is comfortable.

No, he has a responsibility to keep everybody safe. Comfortable is not the same as safe.

Denying boarding to a guy who gave prior notification of his condition is a bit harsh. He might be making other people uncomfortable but what's the chance of him having a bomb? Hardly likely. You can tell a guy with a bomb from a guy with Tourettes.

[Edited 2013-05-01 06:02:57]

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: 777ER
Posted 2013-05-01 07:23:49 and read 4794 times.

Everyone needs to respect each other rights to their own opinions and stop name calling, flame baiting and disrespecting each other. Failure to stop will result in the member being warned and/or suspended for a few days

Everyone has been warned!

777ER
Forum Moderator

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: lightsaber
Posted 2013-05-01 07:39:07 and read 4767 times.

Would you , at the end of a long workday, want to be on a plane with someone who couldn't stop talking about a bomb?

Its one thing to notify, its another to deal with it. It was the Captain's decision. In this case, whatever decision the Captain made is correct. I feel sorry for the kid, but there is no 'right to fly.'

Quoting blueshamu330s (Reply 81):
The situation changed after the Boston Marathon;

Everyone needs to remember that. While I think TS patients should be accommodation, if B6 had let the passenger on, this week be a thread about a passenger talking about a bomb! A no win for JetBlue.  
Quoting 777STL (Reply 107):
So you'd feel completely safe with someone randomly blurting out "Bomb!" on your flight? Remember, hindsight is 20/20, in this situation you would have no idea that he has Tourettes.

And thus why this was the Captain's call. I won't take that right away from the Captain. We can disagree, but that is why that person was the Captain.

Quoting ajd1992 (Reply 122):
No, he has a responsibility to keep everybody safe. Comfortable is not the same as safe.

But someone talking 'bomb' involves safety. The line was crossed.

Lightsaber

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: frmrcapcadet
Posted 2013-05-01 07:57:40 and read 4729 times.

Lily Tomlin orRobin Williams could probably portray the pain and comedy of this situation. Longhauler showed a good solution.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-05-01 08:29:06 and read 4698 times.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 124):
But someone talking 'bomb' involves safety. The line was crossed.

Even if the person's condition is known and explained well in advance, like in this case?

Someone had raised the "shouting 'fire' in a crowded theater" analogy, but in this case isn't it more like a fire drill, where people are told to ignore the fire alarm?

Especially given this view from someone actually close to a TS sufferer?

Quoting Kaiarahi (Reply 121):
- TS sufferers are used to, and generally welcome, telling those around them who may be affected by their behaviour that they have TS and what to expect.






[Edited 2013-05-01 08:59:40]

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-05-01 14:16:44 and read 4556 times.

Quoting Western727 (Reply 128):

The point here is the perception of the other passengers. Many dozens within earshot of this "bomb" utterer - no matter how you paint it (disability, airline aware in advance), it's *STILL* an issue in their minds. If I were a fellow passenger and hearing, I'd feel much more comfortable if the passenger were removed.

Yes, but you don't address the point about the passengers being advised in advance that this was the result of a known medical condition, and nothing to be alarmed about. The "ignore the fire alarm, it is just a test" approach.

Quoting Western727 (Reply 128):
And I can't help that I was born deaf, either. Does that make the FAA an "idiot" (your word) that I can't fly into controlled airports/airspace and can't fly under IFR rules?

This is not a good analogy. Certain physical requirements are required by the FAA for what you describe, else safety could be compromised *directly* as a result, as you are the person flying the aircraft.

The TS sufferer is not flying the aircraft, is not a physical threat to others, and his condition does not make the flight less safe. Yes, it could cause alarm amongst fellow passengers, but then there is a way to handle that too as explained above -- just let them know the situation. And no, there will be to lawsuit threat if you take the pax's consent in advance.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Western727
Posted 2013-05-01 14:38:04 and read 4540 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 127):
Yes, but you don't address the point about the passengers being advised in advance that this was the result of a known medical condition, and nothing to be alarmed about.

Point taken. That's a critical detail I failed to notice earlier (had been under the understanding that the AIRLINE itself was aware and not that an announcement was made to the pax). That does change things from my view. Thanks.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-05-01 14:54:51 and read 4534 times.

Quoting Western727 (Reply 128):
Point taken. That's a critical detail I failed to notice earlier (had been under the understanding that the AIRLINE itself was aware and not that an announcement was made to the pax). That does change things from my view. Thanks.

An announcement was NOT made, Western727. The point is it could easily have been made (and should have been made given the circumstances of this TS sufferer) and thereby this whole situation could have been avoided.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: richierich
Posted 2013-05-01 15:05:43 and read 4514 times.

Quoting FCAFLYBOY (Reply 27):
I guarantee you the pax involved would have had no problem whatsoever with an announcement being made, if it meant he was allowed to fly as per conditions if carriage allowed him to.

How can you make such a guarantee? Do you know this man personally and have you asked him?

There is a lot of room for interpretation here. We don't know that he was going to be yelling "bomb" or various swear words or yelling anything for that matter. However the Captain does have the right to consider the welfare of the other 150 or so people on board this flight and obviously he felt that the greater good of the majority could be compromised by one individual. This situation is further muddied by the fact the airline was alerted ahead of time, and you would think that would make the airline more accomodating but it could have actually made them more likely to deny boarding to this individual!
I really dont know enough to say it was the right decision but I do think the scenario of one man yelling "bomb" all flight long is completely unacceptable, if that was even likely.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-05-01 16:07:37 and read 4458 times.

Quoting ajd1992 (Reply 122):
No, he has a responsibility to keep everybody safe. Comfortable is not the same as safe.


So if a man came on board who smelled like he has not showered in 5 weeks and slept in a garbage dump you would be ok with him being on the airplane?

There was the women who wore very little clothing who was kicked off a WN plane a few years back too.

I am fine with both those situations. I am also fine with the man kicked off flight for an anti TSA shirt.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 120):
You keep saying "HUGE lawsuit" but you have no real basis to claim this. The airline could just ask the family to sign a waiver / document saying they permit it. Why is everyone assuming the family would object, especially since they themselves pre-warned the airline about it? They could just have been told, "No problem, but in certain situations we are required to make an announcement so that other passengers don't misunderstand, and can you please sign this document saying it is okay with you". That's all!


Maybe that is something the airline should have thought before hand. Assuming there was no waiver allowing the flight crew to disclose the passengers private medical information it would be pretty hard to get one at the airport. Unless B6 has an attorney lying around and that they would delay the flight for a few hours to allow the attorney write the correct waiver.
I think the majority of this thread and the laws and regs I have pointed out have to do with the authority of the Captain. What the airline should have had prepared before is a completely different discussion. And I agree with you maybe the airline should have been more prepared. But I am putting myself into the shoes of the Captain. And IMO what he did was completely fine and without a doubt perfectly legal.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: lightsaber
Posted 2013-05-01 20:55:35 and read 4369 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 126):
Quoting lightsaber (Reply 124):
But someone talking 'bomb' involves safety. The line was crossed.

Even if the person's condition is known and explained well in advance, like in this case?

Have you ever managed a large group of people? Its impossible to get everyone to ignore an alarm. In a fire alarm, they go outside even if told its false as they're just not comfortable being there during the alarm.

Can one get 20 to 40 people to go along? Sure. But I guarantee in a group of a hundred, two or three will not pay attention to ignore the TS individual talking. They will react and create a disturbance during the flight. There is no way to stop that. I worked with very well trained individuals and you always have a few slip through the cracks.


Quoting sankaps (Reply 126):
Especially given this view from someone actually close to a TS sufferer?

I feel for anyone with TS and their family. But that doesn't change how other people feel and react. Would I be ok knowing about it ahead of time and being able to emotionally digest the information (say 2 or 3 hours). But if I showed up on a plane with my 2 and 4 year old and there was someone Tic'ing on "bomb" and I'm so busy taking care of them I miss the announcement... I'd complain to the airline.

And how do you train a cabin crew to make such an announcement? I would botch it. Its just opening up the airline to a HUGE lawsuit. That would take a pretty iron clad waiver to explain to a cabin full of passengers... I understand they were informed, but how? In what detail?

I don't mean to be blase, but how I would react would depend if its just me (business flight) or in the distracted environ of taking my kids on a flight. I appreciate everyone wants the best for their kids, in particular one with TS. But it is a situation that would make passengers uncomfortable to a high degree and tough to control.

It comes down that this is the Captain's call. I would *never* remove such a decision from the Captain. The decision could go either way. I wasn't there and thus didn't have a 'feel' of how the cabin might react (reacted?). A tough judgement call. One wants to be kind to the TS sufferer. But how does one keep a cabin calm right after the Boston bombing with someone picking that unfortunate word to 'Tic?'

I'm trying to see both sides. Details I do not know would really impact the Captain's decision. That's all. It is a no win situation for anyone.

Lightsaber

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-05-02 02:12:26 and read 4257 times.

Quoting flymia (Reply 131):
So if a man came on board who smelled like he has not showered in 5 weeks and slept in a garbage dump you would be ok with him being on the airplane?

There was the women who wore very little clothing who was kicked off a WN plane a few years back too.

I am fine with both those situations. I am also fine with the man kicked off flight for an anti TSA shirt.

None of these examples have remotely anything to do with the case at hand. No point constantly comparing apples to oranges.

Quoting flymia (Reply 131):
Maybe that is something the airline should have thought before hand.

Exactly. The "airline" is its people. Reservations, ground, in-flight, everyone. The "airline" collectively dropped the ball here.

Quoting flymia (Reply 131):
What the airline should have had prepared before is a completely different discussion. And I agree with you maybe the airline should have been more prepared. But I am putting myself into the shoes of the Captain. And IMO what he did was completely fine and without a doubt perfectly legal.

Again, if the Captain had not been briefed by the airline, it is still the airline's fault, and the fact still remains that due to lack of sufficient preparation by the airline despite having been advised of the situation well in advance, a pax was removed where he should not have been.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 132):
Have you ever managed a large group of people? Its impossible to get everyone to ignore an alarm. In a fire alarm, they go outside even if told its false as they're just not comfortable being there during the alarm.

Yes indeed I have, lightsaber. And if the announcements are clear, everyone knows its a fire alarm. Two weeks ago I was at the UK Home Office in London for some business. Must have been a couple of hundred people there across two floors. They had a fire alarm test during peak office hours. Pre-announced it twice. And no one mistook it for the real thing. This scenario is played over and over again in commercial buildings all across the modern world.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 132):
And how do you train a cabin crew to make such an announcement? I would botch it. Its just opening up the airline to a HUGE lawsuit.

Cabin crew are there primarily for our safety, as they keep reminding us (especially in the US). There are trained to handle all kinds of announcements and emergencies. This kind of announcement should be no biggie. Yes, the airline needs to have a SOP for it. That is probably the biggest learning for JetBlue out of this episode.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-05-02 04:20:41 and read 4209 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 133):
This kind of announcement should be no biggie.

The company legal department would say otherwise.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 133):
the airline needs to have a SOP for it

They do. The captain assesses the situation based on his knowledge at that time and makes a judgment call. If the customer feels their rights under 14 CFR 382 are being violated, a trained CRO meets with the customer and gets the whole story, then makes a determination if the law has been violated or not.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-05-02 05:25:45 and read 4175 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 134):
The company legal department would say otherwise.

Do you know this for a fact? Even if the pax has signed a waiver? Or is this just your assumption?

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 134):
They do. The captain assesses the situation based on his knowledge at that time and makes a judgment call. If the customer feels their rights under 14 CFR 382 are being violated, a trained CRO meets with the customer and gets the whole story, then makes a determination if the law has been violated or not.

Well, it appears then the SOP has to be fixed to handle these kinds of situations, specifically:

(1) Pax waiver for announcements needs to be part of the SOPs

(2) A system for making sure the Captain is not caught by surprise when the pax has taken the trouble to make the airline aware well in advance

(3) A professionally, compassionately worded FA announcement

(4) Coaching / training to handle other pax who may still be "spooked" by this scenario, and

(5) Coaching / training to not react robotically to any mention of the word "bomb" without taking into account the context at hand.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: lightsaber
Posted 2013-05-02 05:58:46 and read 4150 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 135):
Do you know this for a fact? Even if the pax has signed a waiver? Or is this just your assumption?

How would a waiver stand up in court? By law medical privacy is a HUGE issue in the United States. My sister lost a malpractice lawsuit telling information to her nurse *attending* the patient! And yes, the patient had signed waivers.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 135):
(3) A professionally, compassionately worded FA announcement

That is opening up a legal can of worms. If I were on JetBlue's BOD, I would veto that due to the risk.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 135):
(4) Coaching / training to handle other pax who may still be "spooked" by this scenario, and

You realize some small fraction of passengers are so afraid of flying they enter a state of panic during a flight, right? How do you calm them with the word "bomb?"

I feel for the man with TS. But look at his photo, he's pretty beefy looking! I've posted before, I would be ok on the flight with just myself, but with my daughters...   

Quoting sankaps (Reply 135):
(5) Coaching / training to not react robotically to any mention of the word "bomb" without taking into account the context at hand.

How? That is a lot of expensive and contradictory training (vs. other safety training). For large group training, the message has to be simple and clear. Unfortunately, this is a subject that requires small groups (not a plane full of passengers) to handle.

I could make this work for 20 to 40 people, but I know once the number breaks a hundred, there would be a few people who would react very poorly. Guess what, that would have been B6's fault. Sadly, the airline was put in a loose loose situation.

Lightsaber

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-05-02 06:18:02 and read 4129 times.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 136):

How would a waiver stand up in court? By law medical privacy is a HUGE issue in the United States. My sister lost a malpractice lawsuit telling information to her nurse *attending* the patient! And yes, the patient had signed waivers.

To handle the example you lay out, there should be ways for waivers to be drawn up such that the situation can be generically be described as being "due a non-threatening medical condition" without revealing information of what the specific condition is. Maybe any HIPAA-experienced lawyers reading this can comment.

If required, the announcement can also mention that the concerned pax pre-informed the airline, all checks were fine, and there is no reason to be alarmed.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 136):
You realize some small fraction of passengers are so afraid of flying they enter a state of panic during a flight, right? How do you calm them with the word "bomb?"

Well, perhaps they can be offered the option of taking a later flight?

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 136):
I feel for the man with TS. But look at his photo, he's pretty beefy looking!

Come on now... you are opening another can of worms -- profiling based on size!

[Edited 2013-05-02 06:45:13]

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Kaiarahi
Posted 2013-05-02 06:25:53 and read 4112 times.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 136):
he's pretty beefy looking! I've posted before, I would be ok on the flight with just myself, but with my daughters...

What on earth does that have to do with him having TS?

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Kaiarahi
Posted 2013-05-02 08:41:39 and read 4050 times.

Quoting richierich (Reply 130):
yelling "bomb"
Quoting Kaiarahi (Reply 121):
- Verbal tics (note the spelling - 'ticks' are what give you Lyme disease) very rarely involve yelling. They are usually expressed in a conversational tone or even under one's breath.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-05-02 13:53:03 and read 3947 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 135):
Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 134):The company legal department would say otherwise.
Do you know this for a fact?

While not all airlines' legal counsel are exactly the same, they're pretty darn close. So yes, I do, especially because I'm required to know 14 CFR 382 backward and forward. Medical disclosures - particularly when potential HIPAA violations are involved - are not something a carrier would or could ask a customer to make knowledge of public to others as a condition of carriage.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-05-02 14:17:09 and read 3916 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 140):
While not all airlines' legal counsel are exactly the same, they're pretty darn close. So yes, I do, especially because I'm required to know 14 CFR 382 backward and forward. Medical disclosures - particularly when potential HIPAA violations are involved - are not something a carrier would or could ask a customer to make knowledge of public to others as a condition of carriage.

HIPAA regulations refer to disclosure of the specific ailment. As stated earlier, I am hoping someone can shed some light on whether a generic announcement using a phrase like "a non-threatening medical condition", without revealing information of what the specific condition is, would be okay.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: DeltaMD90
Posted 2013-05-02 14:54:13 and read 3887 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 135):
Do you know this for a fact? Even if the pax has signed a waiver?

I agree that this should work, but I've heard of (unrelated) cases of people suing even when they do sign forms or waivers. IDK why, it's pretty convoluted. So yeah, I doubt the airlines would ever go down that road

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: 777STL
Posted 2013-05-02 15:25:31 and read 3863 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 108):
As stated by many, the crew could have discreetly advised the other pax / asked the family if it was okay to make a polite announcement so that others would have a cleat idea that this was just a medical condition, as has been done in other similar situations mentioned earlier in the thread.

So, I guess that announcement would go something like, "Don't mind the guy in 25C while he screams "Bomb!" the entire flight, he's just mentally disturbed"? That's also a HIPPA violation for what it's worth, if the airline had done that, this would still be in the news, only the airline would be castigated for disclosing the man's medical condition instead of kicking him off the plane. They were damned if they did and damned if they didn't.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 108):
That is why the pax family followed TSA guidelines and *informed the airline weeks in advance of this situation* so they and their crew would be prepared, and not be taken by surprise.

Did they also inform the airline that he'd be screaming "bomb!" the entire time? I'm guessing not.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 108):
His behaviour is directly driven by TS. It is like saying "he was thrown off the aircraft for not walking on his own feet, not because he is crippled".

That doesn't change the consequences to his behavior though. If you can't make it through a flight without screaming "Bomb" and terrifying everyone on the aircraft, then no, you shouldn't be allowed on an aircraft. There are plenty of mental deficiencies that lead to misbehavior, that hardly excuses you from acting in a threatening manner.

What would have happened to this guy had he gotten and up and started blurting out "bomb!" while the aircraft was in flight? A very quick beat down and becoming intimately familiar with the carpet on the cabin floor? Barring him from taking this flight was as much about his personal safety as it was anyone else's.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 108):
Only in the US airline industry would people / sheeple be so paranoid that they believe kicking pax off of aircraft for the slightest perceived or imagined threat despite ample advance information being provided is perfectly normal, acceptable behaviour, thereby ensuring the terrorists have indeed won. The rest of the world is seeing this sadly.

I'd counter that with only in the US are we so absurdly politically correct that we think this guy was wronged for screaming "bomb" in the boarding area right before he was about to board a plane.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-05-02 16:14:49 and read 3839 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 141):
Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 140):While not all airlines' legal counsel are exactly the same, they're pretty darn close. So yes, I do, especially because I'm required to know 14 CFR 382 backward and forward. Medical disclosures - particularly when potential HIPAA violations are involved - are not something a carrier would or could ask a customer to make knowledge of public to others as a condition of carriage.

HIPAA regulations refer to disclosure of the specific ailment

You're splitting hairs, and incorrect. HIPAA violation cases don't have to involve disclosure of ailments, but any identifiable health information at all. Read on:

http://www.justice.gov/olc/hipaa_final.htm

The statute prescribes criminal sanctions only for those violations of the standards that involve the disclosure of "unique health identifiers," id. § 1320d-6(a), or of "individually identifiable health information," id., that is, that subset of health information that, inter alia, "identifies the individual" or "with respect to which there is a reasonable basis to believe that the information can be used to identify the individual," id. § 1320d(6). More specifically, section 1320d-6(a) provides:

A person who knowingly and in violation of this part—
(1) uses or causes to be used a unique health identifier;
(2) obtains individually identifiable health information relating to an individual; or
(3) discloses individually identifiable health information to another person, shall be punished as provided in subsection (b) of this section.


Your proposed "Let's make an announcement!" solution is definitely a HIPAA violation as it would disclose individually identifiable health information regarding a customer, and while not naming the customer directly the disclosure to other passengers via PA or other means would compromise that customer's privacy under the law as that info could be used to identify the person with the health condition.

No airline's legal counsel would consider your solution, ever.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Kaiarahi
Posted 2013-05-02 19:22:44 and read 3781 times.

Quoting 777STL (Reply 143):
while he screams "Bomb!"
Quoting 777STL (Reply 143):
he'd be screaming "bomb!"
Quoting 777STL (Reply 143):
we think this guy was wronged for screaming "bomb"

OK - so let's try some facts again, instead of ignorance:

Quoting Kaiarahi (Reply 121):
- Verbal tics (note the spelling - 'ticks' are what give you Lyme disease) very rarely involve yelling. They are usually expressed in a conversational tone or even under one's breath.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: lightsaber
Posted 2013-05-02 21:36:58 and read 3734 times.

Quoting 777STL (Reply 143):
Barring him from taking this flight was as much about his personal safety as it was anyone else's.

While I didn't agree with much of you post, this part I do. 9/11 cannot happen again as passengers now know they will die in a terrorist event. Someone TIC'ing 'bomb,' no matter how muttered or quiet, runs a risk of triggering someone's Rambo complex.

And it would be next to impossible to prosecute "Rambo" for someone setting up a situation that would make passengers as uncomfortable as someone who couldn't stop saying (even if quietly) 'bomb.' For I do agree someone might have put the individual face down onto the carpet if the comfort level crossed certain lines. For if "Rambo" were prosecuted, it is a pretty easy defense to note someone wouldn't stop talking about a bomb (as long as "Rambo" restrained and didn't intentionally injure).

I do not claim to know any detail other than the Captain made the call not to fly the individual. I'm certain the Captain knew enough to make that call. No airline wants to deny a passenger transit, that is really bad for business. In particular, not Jetblue. I truly believe that is part of their culture.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 133):
Yes, the airline needs to have a SOP for it. That is probably the biggest learning for JetBlue out of this episode.

I would like to know one that would stand up to lawsuits. Any personally identifiable information must be kept confidential. Heck, there are so many lawsuits on that now its now part of most companies new hire training and at big companies an annual web based training.

While the person might express they desire the airline to inform other passengers... Its really tricky legally to say anything. Heck, I'm the legal (albeit backup) guardian for my grandmother and I practically had to resign the forms to get her medical update today when I checked in on her this afternoon and that was just to find out how her dentist results! Medical privacy is *the* legal issue.

I respect you want best for the TS patients. But this is not an area with a clear path. What we would like to do as individuals might negatively impact other individuals. A policy must be set, but it has to be a policy that works for a wide range of individuals and sensitivities.

As noteed:

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 144):
HIPAA violation cases don't have to involve disclosure of ailments, but any identifiable health information at all. Read on:

To sankaps: You're pretending anyone can say much of anything health wise and not be sued. You really can't mention a word about a persons health. There is no announcement the FA's could have done as to disclose anything is a lawsuit.

Quite simply, its a lose lose for Jetblue.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 137):
Maybe any HIPAA-experienced lawyers reading this can comment.

IMHO the laws have to be changed. There is too much legal risk for the airline right now.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 137):
Well, perhaps they can be offered the option of taking a later flight?

Or perhaps the TS individual? Bomb is a word were're trained *not* to ignore. I was offered to be an FAA incident commander (I declined) and that is something that shouldn't be untrained. So why should other passengers delay when a 'trigger word' is being stated?

Quoting sankaps (Reply 137):
Come on now... you are opening another can of worms -- profiling based on size!

And you think a PA announcement could have solved this when you turn a compliment on strength into profiling?!? That man looks strong!

The reality is that someone TICing on a threatening word (Bomb) who is strong is rightfully going to make people feel threatened. Perhaps I shouldn't have used slang for in my region "beefy" doesn't imply fat, it implies muscles. Its a compliment. A strong man is *always* much more likely to be perceived as a threat than a very thin one or most women. Seriously, a PA disclosing medical information is no big deal but noting a strong man would be threatening is profiling?!? Umm... we have two very different impressions on today's legal/threat tolerance environment.

Lightsaber

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-05-02 22:56:21 and read 3706 times.

Quoting 777STL (Reply 143):
So, I guess that announcement would go something like, "Don't mind the guy in 25C while he screams "Bomb!" the entire flight, he's just mentally disturbed"? That's also a HIPPA violation for what it's worth, if the airline had done that, this would still be in the news, only the airline would be castigated for disclosing the man's medical condition instead of kicking him off the plane. They were damned if they did and damned if they didn't.
Quoting 777STL (Reply 143):
Did they also inform the airline that he'd be screaming "bomb!" the entire time? I'm guessing not.
Quoting 777STL (Reply 143):
That doesn't change the consequences to his behavior though. If you can't make it through a flight without screaming "Bomb" and terrifying everyone on the aircraft
Quoting 777STL (Reply 143):
I'd counter that with only in the US are we so absurdly politically correct that we think this guy was wronged for screaming "bomb"

Your entire argument assumes the man was "screaming" bomb. As it has been pointed out several times, there was no screaming. It was a quiet mumbling. TS sufferers don't scream out things. It is indeed interesting how people jump to al sorts of dramatic scenarios and conclusions.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 144):
Your proposed "Let's make an announcement!" solution is definitely a HIPAA violation as it would disclose individually identifiable health information regarding a customer, and while not naming the customer directly the disclosure to other passengers via PA or other means would compromise that customer's privacy under the law as that info could be used to identify the person with the health condition.

No airline's legal counsel would consider your solution, ever.

I would still prefer to hear a professional legal opinion, especially if the pax has signed a waiver and the wording of the announcement is sufficiently generic, without mentioning name or seat number of the pax.

Let's take your argument to the extreme: When there an announcement asking if there is a doctor on board (a not uncommon occurrence), and the doctor is then seen treating / giving a defib to a pax in seat 33C, is not identifiable health information also being disclosed?

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 146):
I would like to know one that would stand up to lawsuits. Any personally identifiable information must be kept confidential.
Quoting lightsaber (Reply 146):
To sankaps: You're pretending anyone can say much of anything health wise and not be sued. You really can't mention a word about a persons health. There is no announcement the FA's could have done as to disclose anything is a lawsuit.

See above.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 146):
Or perhaps the TS individual? Bomb is a word were're trained *not* to ignore. I was offered to be an FAA incident commander (I declined) and that is something that shouldn't be untrained. So why should other passengers delay when a 'trigger word' is being stated?

Transferring the TS sufferer to a later flight would not solve the problem, would it, as there is no certainty he would not mumble the word "bomb" on a later flight too? So given the AIRLINE KNOWS the pax is not a threat, the only workable option really is to transfer the pax who are uncomfortable to a later flight. Much like pax who are nervous about people praying while on board, or with the appearance of someone on board. If the airline knows the person is not a threat, then the right thing to do is to offer the nervous pax the option of a different flight.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: lightsaber
Posted 2013-05-03 05:58:07 and read 3614 times.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 147):
Transferring the TS sufferer to a later flight would not solve the problem, would it, as there is no certainty he would not mumble the word "bomb" on a later flight too?

But it might. Flights are too full to accommodate a larger number of people for one person with TS. I'm sorry. I wish it was a more ideal world. But you've ignored the legal implications of your solution. Its not that simple.

Certain words are trigger words. They're not treated as prayer or other allowed events. Sadly, this TS person was TICing one of the trigger words.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 147):
So given the AIRLINE KNOWS the pax is not a threat

But do the pasengers? We're going to have to agree to disagree. Certain trigger words cannot be ignored. I know too many people afraid of flying. Statistically, a few percent of passengers per flight go into panic due to that fear.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 147):
When there an announcement asking if there is a doctor on board (a not uncommon occurrence), and the doctor is then seen treating / giving a defib to a pax in seat 33C, is not identifiable health information also being disclosed?

Bad example. Emergency first aid is excepted from much legal liability. What is done to keep a person alive/from suffering permanent damage is different than the event here.



Quoting sankaps (Reply 147):
See above.

Avoiding the discussion doesn't make the problem go away. You are criticizing the airline for not taking on multi-million dollars of legal liability. There are processes in place to prevent that disclosure that cannot be bypassed in today's legal environment. IANAL, but I've certainly been through the personal information disclosure training and what you suggest violates current guidelines.

We're going to have to disagree. The one thing I notice you don't answer is why would you take away the captain's option to remove a passenger? None of us were there. The pilot was the PIC (person in charge). Rule #1 of PIC (not just flying, anything such as the doctor in charge or the engineer doing a critical lift), there is one PIC. Give a PIC good procedures and guidelines; enforce those procedures and guidelines. But otherwise, let the PIC make the decisions.

IM me if there is real new information on this thread, otherwise I'm done.

Lightsaber

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: RussianJet
Posted 2013-05-03 06:21:14 and read 3587 times.

I doubt anyone needed to be 'terrified' by this guy. Any passengers concerned could be spoken to, and the situation explained. It's harsh to boot him off if he genuinely can't help it, particularly when the airline were informed ahead of time and, presumably, gave no indication that he wouldn't be carried.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-05-03 06:40:32 and read 3573 times.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 148):

IM me if there is real new information on this thread, otherwise I'm done.

Lightsaber

Me too.

Cheers,
Sankaps.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: 777STL
Posted 2013-05-03 10:42:08 and read 3501 times.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 146):
While I didn't agree with much of you post, this part I do. 9/11 cannot happen again as passengers now know they will die in a terrorist event. Someone TIC'ing 'bomb,' no matter how muttered or quiet, runs a risk of triggering someone's Rambo complex.

And it would be next to impossible to prosecute "Rambo" for someone setting up a situation that would make passengers as uncomfortable as someone who couldn't stop saying (even if quietly) 'bomb.' For I do agree someone might have put the individual face down onto the carpet if the comfort level crossed certain lines. For if "Rambo" were prosecuted, it is a pretty easy defense to note someone wouldn't stop talking about a bomb (as long as "Rambo" restrained and didn't intentionally injure).

Exactly.

Post 9/11, people, that is pax, aren't taking any chances. I do believe something would have happened to him at the hands of other pax had he been walking up and down the aisle mumbling "bomb". In light of that, I think the airline saved this situation from devolving into something much worse than it actually was if that aircraft had taken off.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Kaiarahi
Posted 2013-05-03 13:35:38 and read 3464 times.

A few thoughts:

- The pax successfully cleared security, despite verbal tics of "bomb" on his way through.
- Objectively, he himself was no threat to the safety of the flight, which the airline knew (the article cited by the OP is silent on whether this had been communicated to the PIC).
- Any threat to safety would have resulted from the reaction of other pax.
- TS sufferors are used to explaining their condition to others.
- Instead of a general PA to the whole plane, an FA could have gathered those seated in adjacent rows and said "Mr. Doyle has something he would like to explain to you", thus averting any issues about disclosure by a third party of a health condition.
- It was a difficult call for the PIC (who may or may not have been informed by the airline).

That said, many of the posts on this thread demonstrate utter ignorance of TS:

Quoting 777STL (Reply 143):
screaming "Bomb"
Quoting flymia (Reply 8):
Someone yelling bomb on a full plane
Quoting Jpax (Reply 9):
teenager yelling bomb
Quoting flyingthe757 (Reply 30):
someone yelling bomb
Quoting rwy04lga (Reply 39):
Duct tape would cause less discomfort all around
Quoting garpd (Reply 41):
they offer him a mild sedative which keeps him calm and quiet.
Quoting jagflyer (Reply 54):
Could the man not have taken some sort of sedative
Quoting MeCe (Reply 58):
may be strong sedative that suppress him
Quoting blueflyer (Reply 96):
the issue is over someone screaming "bomb" in a terminal.
Quoting 777STL (Reply 107):
mental patient
Quoting richierich (Reply 130):
yelling "bomb"

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: DeltaMD90
Posted 2013-05-03 15:18:47 and read 3418 times.

Quoting Kaiarahi (Reply 152):
It was a difficult call for the PIC (who may or may not have been informed by the airline)

   This was the point I was trying to make earlier before getting flamed. There obviously are a lot of people on both sides of the issue and there are many people that fully don't understand TS (can you blame them? That's not exactly common knowledge.)

So instead of calling the captain a bigot and wanting him to get crucified, can't we just say he may have just been not 100% sure and maybe JetBlue (and other airlines) need to put out a memo of some sort explaining what to do in this situation?

I feel for the guy that has TS, and the people defending him have only the best interests for him, but sometimes bad situations just happen and everyone disagreeing with you isn't an evil bigot

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-05-05 16:52:29 and read 3265 times.

Quoting 777ER (Reply 123):
Everyone needs to respect each other rights to their own opinions and stop name calling, flame baiting and disrespecting each other. Failure to stop will result in the member being warned and/or suspended for a few days

Everyone has been warned!

777ER
Forum Moderator

In this thread I got really angry. I was admonished: No name calling and my post removed.

But I would like a definition of name calling.

We were talking about Tourette Syndrome, a known medical condition.
A person with TS will be able to work and live an independent life though he has this medical condition.

than we get this post:

Quoting jagflyer (Reply 119):
For those of you who say removing the passenger was wrong and discrimination based on disability, how would you handle these scenarios:

-A severely autistic or developmentally delayed adult begins repeatedly exposing their genitals disrupting the surrounding passengers? He knows no better and does not understand why he cannot do this.

-A passenger boards with a lighter and proceeds to light it during boarding. When told to stop, the passenger will not stop despite the flight attendants requesting them to several times. This passenger is obviously mentally ill and does not comprehend or understand the idea of a higher authority figure explaining the legal/safety reasons to not do it.

The JetBlue passenger who was removed was not discriminated against based solely on the fact that he was disabled. His removal was due to his behaviour and the words he used which was bound to arouse suspicion from other passengers. If he started blurting out "damn yankees" or "civil war" I doubt the outcome would have been the same.

[Edited 2013-04-30 19:54:23]

This compares TS to about the most serious condition of mentally illness, furthermore he projects an image of autistic persons so far out of reality that I got angry.
I started name calling agreed, but what is this post? okay in your opinion? smear every mental illness with the same brush?

I will not repeat what I called it, but if you all do accept this and just get angry about the person calling out I think you all have to rethink your policies.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-05-05 20:14:44 and read 3207 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 154):
In this thread I got really angry.

You?

Seriously?

Naah...   

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 154):
I started name calling agreed, but what is this post?

Can you tell me what this most recent post has to do with the topic?

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-05-05 21:13:01 and read 3174 times.

Quoting RussianJet (Reply 149):
and, presumably, gave no indication that he wouldn't be carried.


An Airline does not need to give any idication that they might not let you or anyone else board.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 147):
I would still prefer to hear a professional legal opinion,


You heard from an aviation professional who knows the law extremely well. I am certainly not a professional but being over half way done with law school, having real world experience in a variety of legal fields, having written an extensive article on federal health confidentiality laws and haven taken a course in Aviation Law you have some pretty decent opinions here between just two people.

Quoting sankaps (Reply 147):
especially if the pax has signed a waiver and the wording of the announcement is sufficiently generic, without mentioning name or seat number of the pax.


I wish it was this simple but this waiver thing is fantasy world. They would have had to have had something like this prepared and even then an airline giving out medical information of its passengers to other passengers and that would be the only way this person would be allowed to go on his trip? That does not sound so great and not an attorney in the world would OK that IMO.

Quoting Kaiarahi (Reply 152):
That said, many of the posts on this thread demonstrate utter ignorance of TS:


You may be right. At the same time the article uses the word "outburst" a "sudden, violent display, as of activity or emotion" going by the words of the article those like myself who said yell may be correct too. I am not a doctor I know nothing about TS though. It was loud enough that the gate agent or captain heard him.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-05-05 22:59:19 and read 3134 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 155):
Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 154):
In this thread I got really angry.

You?

Seriously?

Naah...

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 154):
I started name calling agreed, but what is this post?

Can you tell me what this most recent post has to do with the topic?

You have the reference to what post I am referring to, if you find that post acceptable, than I think you are in the wrong profession.
I have in my family an autistic person, I know a person with TS. If it is okay by you to paint every mentally challenged or disabled person with the brush used in the reply 119 than I hope only very few mentally challenged, disturbed or disabled persons will have to depend on your problem solving abilities.
If you do not understand the context of my post that is your problem

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-05-14 21:29:12 and read 2867 times.

UPDATE


This topic actually motivated me to make this the subject of discussion at my company with many our front-line Lead Agents, most of whom are also trained as CROs. It proved to be a great training opportunity for all without the downside of actually having this occur and experiencing the negative publicity associated with it.

We had some very lively debate on the topic and analyzed all aspects of this situation, involving how this was handled, how it could have been handled better, etc. It also gave me an opportunity to re-evaluate and ultimately reverse my opinion; while the Captain had final authority on this call, I now believe he did not make the right decision and a violation of 14 CFR 382 likely DID occur here.

After our extensive debate on this scenario, the following is how this should have been handled:

- The CRO would be called to the gate to evaluate the situation
- The customer's name would again be checked against the No-Fly list and other TSA watch lists as a precaution
- The CRO would have a brief conversation with the customer to evaluate their intent and if they represent a credible threat

While my previous thought was that it would be consistent with the clause allowing denial of travel based on safety (assuming the customer himself might be in peril if others misinterpret his tics and physically confront him), that ultimately cannot be used as a determining factor for denying boarding.

Assuming the customer was clearly able to articulate his situation to the CRO ("Hey, I've got Tourette's Syndrome and right now it's manifesting itself by saying the word 'bomb' but it's not intentional" , etc.) to their satisfaction and in his/her opinion the customer did NOT represent a credible threat to the safety of the aircraft or those aboard it, the customer should have ultimately been cleared to fly.

Bear in mind, the CRO does NOT have the authority to override the Captain; if the CRO has advised the customer is cleared to fly and that denying travel would be a violation of 14 CFR 382, the Captain may still deny boarding if they choose but they'll later be expected to explain their justification for the violation, inconveniencing the customer and ultimately making the company liable for the violation.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-05-14 22:51:00 and read 2826 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 158):
We had some very lively debate on the topic and analyzed all aspects of this situation, involving how this was handled, how it could have been handled better, etc. It also gave me an opportunity to re-evaluate and ultimately reverse my opinion; while the Captain had final authority on this call, I now believe he did not make the right decision and a violation of 14 CFR 382 likely DID occur here.

Bravo, EA CO AS, for not only actually taking the trouble to raise this issue in your internal company training / discussions, but for also being brave enough to reverse your original view on this situation and how it was handled. I hope this gives all of the others who insist this was handled correctly some food for thought.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: blueflyer
Posted 2013-05-14 23:15:52 and read 2814 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 158):
UPDATE

Very interesting. Thank you for the update. Will you mind a few follow-up questions to enlighten my own train of thoughts?

Will the CRO communicate with the captain and give their opinion, especially if they think that a negative decision from the captain would be a breach of CFR 382?

Is there a CRO at every station? If not, what's the correct approach?

What is the airline's recourse (protection from lawsuit) if a passenger in this thread's specific scenario is attacked by other passengers worried for their own safety mid-air? Doesn't he have ground to sue the airline for not ensuring his own safety?

Even if the captain does breach CFR 382 using safety as justification, is it likely that he or his airline would be sanctioned since, as I understand it, the burden of proof is rather high and requires demonstrating not just that a violation did occur, but that the violation is of such a level that no rational/unbiased person in the same situation could possibly have made it?

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: flymia
Posted 2013-05-14 23:28:09 and read 2805 times.

Quoting blueflyer (Reply 160):
Even if the captain does breach CFR 382 using safety as justification, is it likely that he or his airline would be sanctioned since, as I understand it, the burden of proof is rather high and requires demonstrating not just that a violation did occur, but that the violation is of such a level that no rational/unbiased person in the same situation could possibly have made it

From the Federal U.S. case law I have studied in Aviation Law I believe the burden is high to show that the captain made a mistake and the airline would likely not be liable if he made the decision in good faith. It is not an easy case to win against the airlines and this has been the case in the cases which have gone to trial and to courts of appeals. At least the more landmark cases.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 158):

I understand what you are saying and why you changed your mind but what if the captain was solely concerned about the other passengers and how they would react to this man saying the word bomb. That is where it becomes tricky IMO. I dont think many if any people who said the captain decision was fine actually thought this man was a security threat himself. It was the reaction of other passengers which is the problem. Add in the health privacy concerns and we have a very complicated situation.
But as you said the captain does have final authority.
Whether he was right or not would be up to a jury/judge at first but ultimately likely a panel of judges. IMO he would have a strong case. Obviously that is nothing which airport ops would take into account that's what the legal teams are for later.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-05-14 23:43:09 and read 2790 times.

Quoting blueflyer (Reply 160):
Will the CRO communicate with the captain and give their opinion, especially if they think that a negative decision from the captain would be a breach of CFR 382?

Yes, it's the CRO's job to advise the captain about a potential breach of 14 CFR 382, however the captain has final authority.

Quoting blueflyer (Reply 160):
Is there a CRO at every station?

Yes. By law each carrier is required to have a trained CRO available at every station served by a carrier during the normal operating hours of that station. "Available" usually means in person, but the law does provide for CROs to interact with customers via telephone (or TTY for hearing-impaired customers) if need be, meaning the CRO handling the situation could potentially be at a different station, in one of the airline reservations centers, etc.

Quoting blueflyer (Reply 160):
What is the airline's recourse (protection from lawsuit) if a passenger in this thread's specific scenario is attacked by other passengers worried for their own safety mid-air? Doesn't he have ground to sue the airline for not ensuring his own safety?

I don't know that I'm qualified to answer that as I'm not an attorney, however if such a suit were filed I'm sure the airline's legal counsel would try to work with the customer to find a mutually-acceptable solution before it ever saw the inside of a courtroom.

Quoting blueflyer (Reply 160):
if the captain does breach CFR 382 using safety as justification, is it likely that he or his airline would be sanctioned

If upon review it's determined that the nature of the given safety concern was inconsistent with a credible threat to the aircraft or others aboard, yes.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-05-15 00:30:40 and read 2764 times.

Quoting flymia (Reply 161):
I understand what you are saying and why you changed your mind but what if the captain was solely concerned about the other passengers and how they would react to this man saying the word bomb. That is where it becomes tricky IMO.

That was my thought at first as well, however reflecting on it - since there was no credible threat behind the word - you have to remove that manifestation of the disability as a decision for refusing transport. In other words, substitute any other word instead of "bomb" and you realize there's no reason to deny boarding. Thinking of how others might react to that word, or any other utterance, cannot be a justification for denying travel.

Now if this gentleman's manifestation of his disability was instead that he was prone to uncontrollable bouts of swinging of his arms, that could pose a legitimate safety risk to others and if there were no other accommodation that could be made (finding a seat with no one next to him, for example) then the refusal of transport would be justified since there's a real, credible threat to the safety of his seatmate.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: blueflyer
Posted 2013-05-15 01:24:24 and read 2735 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 163):
Thinking of how others might react to that word, or any other utterance, cannot be a justification for denying travel.

I'm happy to leave the decision to the professionals, but as a mental exercise, this is the part I have a hard time wrapping my mind around.

On the one hand, the captain has a duty to ensure the safety of all passengers, but does that extend to considering how a passenger's behavior affects their own safety?

On the other, in the post 9/11 world, passengers play an active part in their safety and the safety of their aircraft, and have actually done so on previous occasions. It is then, I think, reasonable to expect that passengers who feel a perceived threat from one of their seatmate might react violently in an attempt to disable that seatmate and the perceived threat.

So if a passenger is uttering bomb, why isn't the captain justified in denying him transport for his own safety? That is the part I do not understand.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-05-15 01:24:59 and read 2738 times.

EA CO AS thank you for reconsidering your position.

Live for a person with TS can be frustrating enough without being denied the possibility to travel.
A person suffering from TS can be fully functioning otherwise, finishing school, college,having a job and so on.
The need to travel can be related to work as well as fun.
Having TS the person usually has to carry documentation, just think about being told by a policeman to shut up and not being able to. The downside of documentation can be that he is in handcuffs or worse before the policeman will accept to read it.
They are very used to having to explain to some group that they have TS and what it means.
I live on an island in the middle of the North Atlantic, not being able to fly means not being able to travel.
The right to free movement is a human right even if some in the aviation industry do not think so.

I still think the guy did his part by informing the airline of his condition well in advance.
I still think the captain made the wrong call, without denying him the right to do so.
The emphasis on being able to sue or not is a very American way to look at thinks.

I have one question, when a disabled person is denied boarding, does he has to ask for a CRO or is that automatic or is he at least informed that he has the right to call a CRO.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: EA CO AS
Posted 2013-05-15 05:06:28 and read 2669 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 165):
I have one question, when a disabled person is denied boarding, does he has to ask for a CRO or is that automatic or is he at least informed that he has the right to call a CRO.

Agents are trained to inform the customer they have the right to have a CRO present, however in practice most carriers will automatically involve the CRO even if the customer doesn't request one as part of policy.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: mjoelnir
Posted 2013-05-15 15:10:26 and read 2558 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 166):

Thank you for the answer.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: Kaiarahi
Posted 2013-05-15 15:36:14 and read 2550 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 166):

Thank you very much for taking the time to explore this issue further. As I noted earlier in this thread, I have a son who suffers from TS (and is a very successful surgeon). TS sufferors are well used to explaining their condition and its symptoms to those with whom they interact. In my son's case, few patients decline his services after he has explained his condition (and that despite noticeable physical tics).

I have refrained from participating much in this thread, because of posters who have ignorantly described TS sufferors as "yelling", "mental" and other derogatory terms.

As I said at one point, this pax objectively posed no threat to the security of the flight. The only potential threat could have come from the reaction of other pax, and there are many ways that this could have been mitigated.

Thank you again.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: justplanenutz
Posted 2013-05-16 02:22:46 and read 2445 times.

Quoting EA CO AS (Reply 166):

I too would like to thank you for your informative posts. I have a quadriplegic child and appreciate both your posts about the CRO process and the knowledge that if I need a CRO, it might be an open-minded sort like you!

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: usa330300
Posted 2013-05-16 04:30:06 and read 2387 times.

Quoting mjoelnir (Reply 2):

Who has this sense of entitlement, the captain?

The airline was informed in advance.

The airline being informed in advance does not constitute a free pass for this individual to be disruptive, and even threatening to the public at large. The captain does in fact have an entitlement as he has the final say in the operation of the flight. This individual clearly was incapable of taking flight. So yes, the captain made the proper decision. And yes, this individual has a clear sense of entitlement, and dare say arrogance. People with disabilities should not be discriminated against, yet they should not be able to disrupt society at large with undue burdens.

Topic: RE: Man With Tourette Syndrome Denied Boarding
Username: sankaps
Posted 2013-05-16 04:50:14 and read 2373 times.

Quoting usa330300 (Reply 170):
This individual clearly was incapable of taking flight.

Oh bother! Clearly you have not taken the trouble to read this thread properly, especially the last few posts that negate this very point that you are making. The individual was fully "capable of taking flight", and was not a threat to anyone.


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