Back in 2017 at Portland International Airport, a 75-year-old woman died from falling down an escalator in her wheelchair. Alaska Airlines has now been ordered to pay $3.2 million to the victim’s family after it was found they requested a gate-to-gate escort for her multiple times, which Alaska failed to coordinate. The elderly woman was said to be hard of hearing by family, and that she often became confused in unfamiliar places, deeming it necessary to travel with an escort throughout the airport.
The jury in King County Superior Court found this incident to be a violation of the Air Carrier Access Act, “which requires airlines to provide certain assistance for passengers with disabilities, including with boarding, deplaning and making connections.” The fall was said to have left the woman with multiple injuries, including an injury to her Achilles tendon, which resulted in an infection that she later died from after doctor’s attempted to amputate her leg. No policy changes have yet been announced by Alaska Airlines in response to the situation.
GLP Attorneys has extensive experience in handling wrongful death cases. If your loved one is involved in an incident leading to a wrongful death, reach out to us at one of our offices for a free consultation.