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Thrown off Air Canada Flight by Idiotic Flight Crew

Sydney, New South...
posts: 1
reviews: 6
Thrown off Air Canada Flight by Idiotic Flight Crew

If you have a medical condition, do not tell Air Canada before you take off.

We were removed from a flight due to a misinterpretation of Air Canada's health safety guidelines. My son has a nut allergy. Their rules had changed and some idiot decided that we needed to get medical clearance from Air Canada's Medical department.

On the phone the next day, Medical told me that the flight crew had made a mistake, as my son does not have a problem with airborne contagens.

I tried to explain this to the flight staff, but they held the flight up for half an hour to get us off the plane. They were going to remove our luggage, but I told them not to bother as I felt we had disturbed the flight enough.

So my wife, and other three children went back to Sydney and we followed a day later. I am sure you can imagine the amount of inconvenience this caused our entire family (wife had to handle extra luggage, changed travel arrangements to get home, rescheduled meetings, etc, etc.), as well as distressing and embarrassing my son.

Not impressed with Air Canada.

Terrigal, Australia
posts: 1,596
reviews: 292
1. Re: Thrown off Air Canada Flight by Idiotic Flight Crew

Hi,

Really sorry to hear of your experience;

try posting your complaint on www.airlinequality.com will get a wider readership !

Safe Travels!

UK
posts: 41,283
reviews: 87
2. Re: Thrown off Air Canada Flight by Idiotic Flight Crew

What and when did you say to who?

Portland, Oregon
Destination Expert
for Air Travel
posts: 16,592
reviews: 5
3. Re: Thrown off Air Canada Flight by Idiotic Flight Crew

Taking your post at face value, IF the sequence of events played out as you described, and AC's medical staff accepted that their crew was in error, then I'd write a letter to AC.

Make it polite and factual (under no circumstances use the word "idiot") and **ask** that AC acknowledge the error and request a goodwill gesture to cover your inconvenience. I'd say your chances of an apology would be good, and you'd probably be offered a couple of hundred $$ off future flights or a few thousand Aeroplan miles (not something to turn your nose up to). And with that gesture in mind, in your polite letter make sure you indicate how many of you (include names) were inconvenienced. The gesture should be per passenger, including those that flew the original flight.

Edited: 2:18 am, January 22, 2013
Nannup, Australia
posts: 3,605
reviews: 23
4. Re: Thrown off Air Canada Flight by Idiotic Flight Crew

Why couldn't the AC airport staff liaise with 'Medical' to get a ruling there and then?

UK
posts: 41,283
reviews: 87
5. Re: Thrown off Air Canada Flight by Idiotic Flight Crew

Taking your post at face value

======

USB, I'd say there's not enough enough info to take anything at face value. For all we know, what happened was, OP said;

"my son has a serious allergy and could die if nuts are served on this flight so please make sure they arent"

Cabin crew thought - best then to get child off flight

Parent then said "no its OK he's not intolerant to airborne particles" and crew thought "parent is now just saying that as they woudl rather endanger child than lose flight" or "I'm not going to risk a multi million dollar lawsuit when child does die or is seriously ill and parent can say they clearly warned me".

No one here knows what the parents said initially, and therefore if the flight crew were totally unreasonable, or took a logical course of action given what they were initially told and the parents then seemed to be backing down.

Asking the OP again - if your child is not intolerant or susceptible to airborne particles, what did you say, and why did you say anything?

Coffs Harbour...
posts: 1,263
reviews: 150
6. Re: Thrown off Air Canada Flight by Idiotic Flight Crew

There is no way this incident would have happened if the OP did not first inform the flight crew of a serious medical nut allergy.

If the child did indeed not have an affliction to airbourne nut odour, then there really was no need to inform the crew in the first place, as any concerned parent would have packed a suitable meal/snack for their child and ensured the child did not partake of any in-flight items.

Unfortunately, some parents decide that thier child's allergy must be known to all who will listen, and this is how the story ends sometimes.

In future, do not inform those that need not be informed.

AC crew did the exact right thing. Why should the entire plane load of passengers (some of whom also had nut allergies - but self manage) be held up so that medical advice can be sought for a non-immediate life threat.

Well done AC, as you can bet your bottom dollar if an incident had occured in-flight and AC did not seek clarification, the OP would now be posting about how AC did not take them seriously.

Portland, Oregon
Destination Expert
for Air Travel
posts: 16,592
reviews: 5
7. Re: Thrown off Air Canada Flight by Idiotic Flight Crew

Joe, hence my upper case IF. :)

Leicester, United...
posts: 1,275
reviews: 1
8. Re: Thrown off Air Canada Flight by Idiotic Flight Crew

"If the child did indeed not have an affliction to airbourne nut odour, then there really was no need to inform the crew in the first place"

I think that's the lesson the OP learned and he is trying to be helpful by sharing it with others, given his opening statement: "If you have a medical condition, do not tell Air Canada before you take off."

Bingley, United...
Destination Expert
for Edinburgh
posts: 26,621
9. Re: Thrown off Air Canada Flight by Idiotic Flight Crew

The moral of the story is to tell the airline about medical problems when you book and not at the gate as last minute decisions tend to be poor decisions.

If the airline had known several weeks in advance then they would have been able to follow their normal procedures rather than having it sprung on them at the last minute.

Nannup, Australia
posts: 3,605
reviews: 23
10. Re: Thrown off Air Canada Flight by Idiotic Flight Crew

Alanrow - you don't know when the OP told AC originally - noting that he is from Australia and the problem occurred in Canada. To me it sounds as if he was reinforcing info to the cabin crew that may have been in the booking computer. But, like you, I don't know for sure.