Air Carrier Act Simplified
Understanding The Air Carrier Act
14 CFR Part 382: Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability in Air Travel
Air Carrier or carrier means any citizen of the United States who undertakes, whether directly or indirectly or by a lease or any other arrangement, to engage in air transportation.
Air carrier airport means a public, commercial service airport which enplanes annually 2,500 or more passengers and receives scheduled air service.
Air transportation means interstate, overseas, or foreign air transportation, or the transportation of mail by aircraft, as defined in the Federal Aviation Act.
Department or DOT means the United States Department of Transportation.
FAA means the Federal Aviation Administration, an operating administration of the Department.
Facility means all or any portion of aircraft, buildings, structures, equipment, roads, walks, parking lots, and any other real or personal property, normally used by passengers or prospective passengers visiting or using the airport, to the extent the carrier exercises control over the selection, design, construction, or alteration of the property.
Individual with a disability means any individual who has a physical or mental impairment that, on a permanent or temporary basis, substantially limits one or more major life activities, has a record of such an impairment, or is regarded as having such an impairment. As used in this definition, the phrase:
(a) Physical or mental impairment means:
(1) any physiological disorder or condition, cosmetic disfigurement, or anatomical loss affecting one or more of the following body systems: neurological, musculoskeletal, special sense organs, respiratory including speech organs, cardio-vascular, reproductive, digestive, genito-urinary, hemic and lymphatic, skin, and endocrine; or
(2) any mental or psychological disorder, such as mental retardation, organic brain syndrome, emotional or mental illness, and specific learning disabilities.
The term physical or mental impairment includes, but is not limited to, such diseases and conditions as orthopedic, visual, speech, and hearing impairments; cerebral palsy, epilepsy, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, mental retardation, emotional illness, drug addiction, and alcoholism.
(b) Major life activities means functions such as caring for one’s self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, and working.
(c) Has a record of such impairment means has a history of, or has been classified, or misclassified, as having a mental or physical impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.
(d) Is regarded as having an impairment means:
(1) Has a physical or mental impairment that does not substantially limit major life activities but that is treated by an air carrier as constituting such a limitation;
(2) Has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity only as a result of the attitudes of others toward such an impairment; or
(3) Has none of the impairments set forth in this definition but is treated by an air carrier as having such an impairment.
Indirect air carrier means a person not directly involved in the operation of an aircraft who sells air transportation services to the general public other than as an authorized agent of an air carrier.
Qualified individual with a disability means a individual with a disability who —
(a) With respect to accompanying or meeting a traveler, use of ground transportation, using terminal facilities, or obtaining information about schedules, fares or policies, takes those actions necessary to avail himself or herself of facilities or services offered by an air carrier to the general public, with reasonable accommodations, as needed, provided by the carrier;
(b) With respect to obtaining a ticket for air transportation on an air carrier, offers, or makes a good faith attempt to offer, to purchase or otherwise validly to obtain such a ticket;
(c) With respect to obtaining air transportation, or other services or accommodations required by this part:
(1) Purchases or possesses a valid ticket for air transportation on an air carrier and presents himself or herself at the airport for the purpose of traveling on the flight for which the ticket has been purchased or obtained; and
(2) Meets reasonable, nondiscriminatory contract of carriage requirements applicable to all passengers;
Scheduled air service means any flight scheduled in the current edition of the Official Airline Guide, the carrier’s published schedule, or the computer reservation system used by the carrier.
Definitions are pretty self-explanatory. The ACAA applies to disabled individuals who are U.S citizens traveling domestically or internationally on a commercial airline via an airport located in the United States.
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