Secretary Buttigieg Announces Proposed Rule to Ensure Passengers Who Use Wheelchairs Can Fly with Dignity

U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg today announced a new proposed rule from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) that would ensure airline passengers who use wheelchairs can travel safely and with dignity. 

The proposed rule would require that airlines meet rigorous standards for accommodating passengers with disabilities safely and with dignity.  The proposal will set new standards for prompt, safe, and dignified assistance, mandate enhanced training for airline employees and contractors who physically assist passengers with disabilities and handle passengers’ wheelchairs and specify actions that airlines must take to protect passengers when a wheelchair is damaged during transport. Notably, the proposed rule also would make it easier for DOT to hold airlines accountable when they damage or delay the return of a wheelchair by making it an automatic violation of the Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA) to mishandle wheelchairs. 

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