By John McDevitt
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The US Department of Transportation has fined US Airways $1.2 million for failing to provide adequate wheelchair assistance to disabled passengers in Philadelphia and Charlotte, NC.READ MORE: ABC Men Feeding Philadelphia Community Physically And Spiritually One Box At A Time
The fine is one of the largest assessed by the department in a disability case, and the airline says it has already put changes into place to address the problems.
About 300 US Airways passengers complained in 2011 and 2012 that they were left unattended in the terminals for long periods of time or missed connecting flights when assistance was needed to get from one gate to another via wheelchair or electric cart.READ MORE: Camden County Health Officials Enlisting Bilingual Volunteers To Help Dispel COVID Vaccine Fears In Latino Community
Since that time, US airways spokesman Todd Lehmacher says, improvements have been made, with more to come.
“We are investing $2 million per year in continuous enhancements to our technology, staffing, and training,” he told KYW Newsradio today. “This will build on the success of our recent improvements and ensure that our customers with disabilities have a positive travel experience on our airline.”
The airline says some of the revisions include special markings on boarding passes indicating needed assistance, and employees being equipped with devices that track customers’ wait times and the availability of personnel and wheelchairs.MORE NEWS: 'Really Good Step In The Right Direction' For Philadelphia Restaurants As Some COVID Restrictions Relaxed