A man suffering from the neurological condition Multiple Sclerosis is to sue the airline industry after claiming that their policy on wheelchair toilet-access has often left him stranded in his seat, reports the Scottish Daily Record.
John Findlay, 48, is to launch a legal action against flight operators after claiming that the lack of wheelchair access to toilets amounts to a breach of disability legislation.
Mr Findlay claims that he has been left stranded in his seat for hours on various flights abroad because he cannot access the plane toilet in his wheelchair.
Most airlines do provide assistance to allow wheelchair passengers to get on board a flight and to disembark on landing; however, very few allow wheelchair users the opportunity to access an aisle chair in order to move themselves to the toilet.
“”I’m in a wheelchair but I still want to enjoy a holiday the same as everyone else,” Mr Findlay told the Daily Record.
“The last one was such an awful experience that I’ve decided to challenge airlines who don’t provide facilities to allow us to use the toilet,” he added.
Mr Findlay has even rung airlines in advance of the flight to request that an aisle chair be provided, only to find that none is on board.
European law states that airlines must provide services for wheelchair users in order to ensure fair access to foreign travel.
Mr Findlay’s lawyer is Patrick McGuire of law firm, Thompsons.
“The law is there to protect disabled citizens, and either the law is flawed and we need to challenge it or airlines are not applying it,” he told the Daily Record.
The Civil Aviation Authority has backed Mr Findlay’s assertions that wheelchair users should be treated fairly, as have the travel watchdog, ABTA.
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