July 27, 2013

Delta accused of forcing paralyzed man to crawl off of plane

A former college professor who cannot walk has sued Delta Airlines in federal court, claiming that crew members on two flights told him the only way he could get off the plane was to crawl down the aisle, down the steps and across the tarmac.
D. Baraka Kanaan, who lives in Hawaii, filed the suit July 23 in U.S. District Court in Honolulu, against the airlines and 20 unnamed individuals.
Kanaan, who suffers from partial paralysis of his legs stemming from a car accident, said the airline's "outrageous conduct" occurred on two flights he took a year ago.
On July 26, 2012, Kanaan, who is now head of the Lovevolution Foundation, was scheduled to take a series of Delta flights from Maui to Nantucket, Mass., for a conference.
Several weeks before the flight, Kanaan spoke to a Delta customer service representative about needing a lift to get on the plane and an aisle chair to get to his seat, the suit states. The representative assured him that he would be accommodated, according to the complaint.
After his scheduled flight was canceled because of weather, he was booked on another flight the next day. When he arrived in Nantucket, a flight attendent told him the airline did not have an aisle chair or a lift to get him off the plane to retrieve his wheelchair.
According to the complaint, the Airline Carrier Access Act and other federal regulations require airlines to have such equipment for disabled passengers.
When Kanaan asked about his options, the flight attendant said, "I don't know, but we can't get you off the plane," the suit states.
Although a lift was visible at an adjacent gate, Kanaan was forced to crawl out of the plane and across the tarmac without any assistance from the crew and with many people watching, according to the lawsuit.
Kanaan called the airlines to complain and to report that he would need the same equipment for his return trip.
Despite assurances it would be there, the complaint states that when boarding began the needed aisle chair and lift were unavailable but a flight attendant told him they could put down a piece of cardboard so his clothes wouldn't get dirty.
Upon his return home, a Delta representative offered him 25,000 "sky miles" as compensation, which he refused, the suit states.
Kanaan is seeking compensatory and punitive damages to be determined at trial, according to the complaint.
On Friday, Delta had not filed its response, according to online records.


  1. Isn't that enough to cancel Delta's license?

  2. Typical American. bullies and evil warmongers. Pretending to be humane .

  3. There was a time when an airline (or any other business),would NEVER mistreat their customers in such a depraved & heartless fashion,'customer satisfaction' being an important & actual goal.

  4. I wasn't there but I find this hard to believe. I fly very often and witness handicapped passengers being accommodated quite often as well. Thinking there is a bit more to this story.

  5. I have flown Delta many times, and I am disabled. Their employees did their level best to get me on and off the plane. Several times they bumped me to 1st class to be closer to the door. I hope Delta's lawyers squash this squid.

  6. Yeah, this smacks of BS. He sounds like a jackass wanting a payday or a self-appointed activist that wants to be famous. He always had the option of not taking the flight and they warned him about leaving the aircraft. If a handicapped person truly needed an aisle seat, any number of people would have volunteered their seats. He was probably being a self-righteous prick if no one helped him. Also, he probably would have sued the flight attendants if they helped move him. Plus, what if the flight attendants injured themselves while moving him?

  7. Every man is liable for his self. So sorry that corporate whatever didn't carry whatever to the whatever. If you cant do it, get ready to fail and then languish. This is not my wish, this is reality.

    If you disagree with this, then place proper argument, so I can shred you.

  8. Let us just presuppose that this is true, that this event actually happened. It would then be my suggestion that you, along with anyone else who would watch a disabled person crawl across the tarmac at an airport have lost their humanity..."every man is responsible for his self" (nice grammar by the way)...I do hope karma pays you back the next time you are in need of emergency attention ...maybe if you ever get in a car wreck or something the police and EMTs will let you crawl from the wreckage and crawl off to the hospital hopefully while you bleed out so that the rest of us who are still human beings benefit by shedding your cold lack of empathy from the gene are a troll sir. Shred that.

  9. Ha, you hit me with karma and then wish ill will. You certainly are still a human being, meeting the status quo of that title.

    I quote: "I do hope karma pays you back the next time you are in need of emergency attention" well as, "maybe if you ever get in a car wreck or something the police and EMTs will let you crawl from the wreckage and crawl off to the hospital HOPEFULLY WHILE YOU BLEED OUT so that the rest of us who are still human
    beings benefit by...blah blah blah." Negative karma meets its match on that one.

    Funny how it's OK for you toss me into a hellish nightmare in response. I guess when you do it that way, it's righteous. Very Christian-like too. The old you either believe as I do or my god is going to fry you in hell for all eternity play. Good one.

    Now, I never said I would watch the man crawl across the tarmac. I said that the corporation would. If you are dealing with a corporation, you are undoubtedly liable for yourself. If you even dream for a moment that a profiteering corporation is going to take on any liability, no matter how handicapped you might be, then you are an even greater hypocrite.

    Lots of do-gooders pointing fingers at the corporation. What should happen is the people on the plane, standing around with their iPhones and their fingers up their nose, should have moved to action. Instead, everyone watches and then blames big plane corp after the fact. The story should have read that a man was humiliated while fellow passengers watched on with indifference...

    Finally, I know it looks like your little diatribe gets a boost of authenticity when you play grammar checker. This is a comment board, not the SAT. I'm not producing words professionally. Are you going to go through every post and let people know they forgot the apostrophe in the contraction, and that aint aint a word?

    A troll is someone that posts thoughts to gain sensationalism, often using sentiment he doesn't believe. I am not guilty of that.

  10. Yeah, the next time I see you I'm going to kick in the gut and then put a bullet in your head.