Latest Campaign Is "No Child Left Unbuckled"
Melissa Bradley and her family of 5, including their
11-month-old son, were removed from United Airlines flight #75 from
San Francisco to Honolulu on Thursday. They were told that the
reason was because their rear facing car seat, which is FAA has
approved for use on aircraft, could not fit in the seat due to a
lack of space between the row in front and the infant seat. They
purchased a separate seat and brought an FAA certified/CRS (Child
Restraint Seat) approved for their child. Ms. Bradley has informed
FlyersRights.org that she twice attempted to protect her child on
United Airlines by purchasing a seat and bringing a car seat; and
twice was been denied the opportunity to protect her young son.
FAA Guidelines state: "No aircraft operator may prohibit a child
from using an approved CRS when the parent/guardian purchases a
seat for the child. If an approved CRS for which a ticket has been
purchased, does not fit in a particular seat on the aircraft, the
aircraft operator has the responsibility to accommodate the CRS in
another seat in the same class of service."
"It appears that United Airlines, rather than following
federally mandated guidelines, chose to remove not only the entire
Bradley family of five but also two of their traveling companions
and force them to wait for hours until the next flight—a
clear violation Federal law," said Kate Hanni, Founder and Director
of FlyersRights.org. "Parents of small children and infants should
always have a federally approved restraint, or a rear facing car
seat appropriate for the age, height and weight of their child when
traveling by air and airlines should do everything in their power
to accommodate their use – not thwart parents in their
attempts to safeguard their children."
FlyersRights.org is currently reviewing all the options
available to the Bradley family and other families that have been
victims of this practice. These options include, but are not
limited to, increased penalties and sanctions against airlines, as
well as potential legislative action.
Tess Sosa was aboard US Airways Flight #1549 when it went down
in the Hudson River on 1/15/09. She had a child seated on her lap
at the time of the incident. She is now a fierce advocate for "no
children being left unbuckled" because her son nearly became a
human projectile when the plane hit the river at 125 mph. Were it
not for the gentleman next to her holding the baby she is certain
the outcome would have been dire.
"When our flight crashed into the Hudson River, we did not have
the proper safety equipment for our infant on board-- I learned
firsthand how valuable the proper safety restraint can be," said
Tess Sosa, parent, Hudson River Crash Survivor and In-flight Child
Safety Advocate. "We now insist on using the best equipment
available for our children when we fly—this is a right all
parents, and children must have."
Tess Sosa and Melissa Bradley are members of FlyersRights.org
and are strong advocates for in-flight infant safety.