•   
  •   
  •   

Travel DOT seeks public comment about how to regulate animals flying with passengers

08:50  17 may  2018
08:50  17 may  2018 Source:   usatoday.com

Dog Bite of Child Spurs Southwest to Review Support Animals

  Dog Bite of Child Spurs Southwest to Review Support Animals Southwest Airlines Co. is reviewing its policies on emotional support and service animals after a dog bit a young girl on the forehead aboard one of its planes. The dog was in the first row of seats against a bulkhead when the girl, about six years old, approached it after the owner had asked her to stay back, said Southwest spokeswoman Melissa Ford. The dog’s teeth “scraped” the girl’s forehead as it turned away, breaking the skin and causing a minor injury, she said.Southwest won’t “immediately” change its animal policies “because we want to do it right” after reviewing the issue, Ford said Thursday.

The Transportation Department asked Wednesday for comment about regulating how animals fly with passengers on planes. DOT seeks public comments on flying with animals . Author: Bart Jansen, USA TODAY.

DOT seeks public comment about how to regulate animals flying with passengers . The Transportation Department asked Wednesday for comment about regulating how animals fly with passengers on planes.

a dog sitting in front of a mirror posing for the camera: A service dog strolls April 1, 2017, down the aisle of a United Airlines plane at Newark Liberty International Airport while taking part in a training exercise, in Newark, N.J.© Julio Cortez, AP A service dog strolls April 1, 2017, down the aisle of a United Airlines plane at Newark Liberty International Airport while taking part in a training exercise, in Newark, N.J.

WASHINGTON – The Transportation Department announced Wednesday it was seeking comment for drafting rules for dealing with animals flying with passengers on planes.

The proposal asks for comment for 45 days about questions such as:

♦Whether to treat psychiatric service animals the same as other service animals, such as for the blind and deaf.

♦How to distinguish emotional-support animals from other service animals.

Bumpy Delta flight leads 7 people to fall ill; 'It was like being on a boat'

  Bumpy Delta flight leads 7 people to fall ill; 'It was like being on a boat' Talk about a rough ride.

Now the U.S. Department of Transportation ( DOT ) is seeking input from the public about how to prevent untrained animals from flying , and how to ensure that those with disabilities can best fly with their service animals .

Have an opinion about flying with animals ? DOT wants to hear from you.

♦Whether to require emotional-support animals to travel in containers, or with a harness or leash.

♦Potentially limiting the types of animals qualifying as emotional-support animals.

♦Potentially prohibiting airlines from requiring veterinary health forms or immunization records for service animals.

Because of the rulemaking, the department says it will focus enforcement on clear violations of current rules that could affect the largest number of passengers.

The request for comment comes after American, Delta and United airlines revised their policies in recent months to prohibit animals such as reptiles and birds as comfort animals traveling with passengers in the cabin.

The goal of the rulemaking is to ensure that individuals with disabilities can travel with animals they rely on for assistance, while also preventing fraud by travelers bringing along pets under the guise of service animals.

Alaska Airlines Announces New Emotional Support Animal Policy

  Alaska Airlines Announces New Emotional Support Animal Policy The new rules apply to those who purchase tickets on or after May 1.Starting with passengers who purchase tickets on or after May 1, all travelers flying Alaska with emotional support animals must provide health and behavioral documents and a signed form from a doctor at least 48 hours in advance of their departure.

Have an opinion about flying with animals ? DOT wants to hear from you.

Have an opinion about flying with animals ? DOT wants to hear from you.

Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, which represents 50,000 flight attendants at 20 airlines, urged the department to clarify the regulations for emotional-support animals quickly, to avoid interfering with legitimate service animals for veterans and others with disabilities.

"In recent years, there has been an exponential increase of people claiming the need for emotional support animals in the cabin,” Nelson said.“Flight attendants and passengers have been bitten, attacked, and inconvenienced by animals who are not properly trained to be in a confined public environment.”

The Americans with Disabilities Act established that trained service animals such as dogs or miniature horses could travel on flights. The department received 2,443 complaints from travelers with service animals on U.S. and foreign airlines in 2016, and another 2,499 last year.

New legislation seeks to penalize travelers flying with fake service animals

  New legislation seeks to penalize travelers flying with fake service animals Better hang tight to Fluffy and Fido.It would require federal agencies to establish a standard of behavior for service animals who will be working on an aircraft.

Have an opinion about flying with animals ? DOT wants to hear from you.

More: DOT seeks public comment about how to regulate animals flying with passengers . But at least one airport is not waiting for DOT to get around to making its final ruling.

Passengers can also bring pets such as dogs or cats in containers that fit in seating area for a fee. Airlines set their own policies for the fee and the number of animals on a given flight.

But the Air Carrier Access Act opened the door to a broader range of emotional-support animals to fly in the cabin without a kennel, to comfort passengers with mental-health issues.

In recent years, the variety exploded to include monkeys, pigs and ducks as emotional-support animals, although airlines didn't have to accept reptiles, ferrets or rodents.

These comfort animals, which didn’t require specified training, sometimes upset other passengers. Airlines uniformly opposed recognition of emotional-support animals that weren't required under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

"The use of unusual species as service animals has also added confusion," said the 41-page filing requesting comment from James Owens, the department's deputy general counsel.

Meanwhile, the Psychiatric Service Dog Society asked the department in 2009 to recognize a new classification for psychiatric service animals distinct from comfort animals. The group asked the department to stop allowing airlines to require documentation and 48 hours' notice for their animals.

American Airlines bans emotional support amphibians, ferrets, goats and more

  American Airlines bans emotional support amphibians, ferrets, goats and more First United Airlines barred an emotional support peacock from boarding. Now American Airlines is telling passengers some of their service and emotional support animals - including goats, hedgehogs and tusked creatures - can't fly. The carrier is joining rival airlines in tightening rules for passengers flying with emotional support animals, expanding the list of animals that can't fly in First United Airlines barred an emotional support peacock from boarding. Now American Airlines is telling passengers some of their service and emotional support animals - including goats, hedgehogs and tusked creatures - can't fly.

Animals on airline flights? DOT flooded with comments . Instead, the Air Carrier Access Act said service animals could fly in the cabin with passengers , while also opening the door to broader range of emotional-support But one man asked how to get a reptile called a bearded dragon approved.

Gazelle.

Related slideshow: Tips and Tricks to Land Cheap Flights (Provided by The Daily Meal)

Tips and Tricks to Land Cheap Flights: Booking a flight is a tricky procedure. While you could just pull up any website, enter your desired dates and destination, and pick whichever flight looks best, you wouldn’t have a very wallet-friendly trip. There are already so many other travel expenses to worry about, such as booking your hotel, buying the latest travel accessories, and tickets to any events, attractions, and top museums at your destination.You may already be familiar with some common tricks of the trade, such as flying at odd hours or on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, which are generally the cheapest days to book a flight. However, there are quite a few other hacks for saving a buck or two (or a few hundred) that the average traveler isn’t aware of. To help you save as much as possible on airfare, we’ve compiled some of the best tips in one place. Some may be a bit unconventional, but they’re all fantastic tips and tricks for landing cheap flights. Tips and Tricks to Land Cheap Flights Airlines decided to revise their own rules after a Transportation Department panel was unable to reach a regulatory compromise in 2016.

"Recently, a few airlines have begun requiring service animal users to provide information about their animal's health and behavior as a condition of travel," the department said.

In January, Delta said its changes came as the airline carried about 250,000 animals last year that were increasingly misbehaving by wandering the cabin, defecating or even biting passengers. A comfort dog bit a passenger in the face while a flight boarded last June.

United's change in February came after a woman tried to bring a peacock with her on a flight. But United began reviewing its policy in 2017 after noticing a jump in comfort animals on flights to 76,000 from 43,000 the year before, and “a significant increase in onboard incidents.”

Starting July 1, American will require passengers to notify the carrier about a comfort animal 48 hours before a flight, and then sign a waiver stating the need for the animal.

In order for an animal to qualify, the passenger must provide a letter from a mental-health professional describing the mental or emotional disability that shows the need for the animal, and proof of the professional’s licensing.

To file a public comment, visit regulations.gov/docket?D=DOT-OST-2018-0068.

Related video: Woman Tries to Board United Flight With Peacock as Comfort Animal (Provided by Newsweek)

Jet2 passengers injured when snack cart hurtles through plane during landing .
A number of Jet2 passengers were injured when an unsecured snack cart rolled from the back of the plane down the aisle during landing, hitting passengers’ legs and arms along the way. The incident happened Sunday as the plane was flying into Belfast International Airport.Though the passengers were only slightly injured, several onboard said the incident was terrifying because they “didn’t know what it was.”William Smyth, who was hit by the cart and given an ice pack for his leg, told BBC, “It was scary enough. We didn’t know what it was, so you end up thinking all sorts.

—   Share news in the SOC. Networks

Topical videos:

This is interesting!