Passenger Rights Advocates Profiled

Interesting and not entirely flattering profile today in USA Today of Kate Hanni and Paul Hudson, the driving forces behind the push for an airline passenger rights law.

Of course, the Senate has effectively killed the legislation, at least for the time being.

The comments from readers of the story are just as interesting. My favorite:

Perhaps the rule should be simple. For every hour passengers are sitting on the plane, each passenger receives $50 in compensation. Implement this and I’ll bet they will find a gate or way to deplane the passengers quickly.

Several other commenters scoffed at the idea, but it does make some sense. Imposing a penalty after a few hours on the ground would encourage airlines to send stranded planes back to the the gate. 

Still, I think I favor a simple deadline. Planes will return to the gate and allow passengers to get off after three hours. Period.

The argument against this is that the plane will then lose its place in line to take off. But I’m thinking two things about that. First, the other planes will also lose their places in line. Second, maybe the rules can be changed. After all, our civil rights are at stake.


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