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Aviation Insurance
Monday, November 1, 2010
Hard battle

The airline industry is fighting a hard battle over compensation for delays – especially when the delay is beyond their control. I wouldn’t have thought that it should take anyone very long to work this out. The international convention, Montreal 1999, has damage caused by delay included, and this is subject to Article 19, which states quite bluntly that the carrier will not be liable if the damage was caused by reasons beyond his control or if it had taken all reasonable steps to avoid delay. The volcanic ash story would fall under this and then all the carrier has to do is return the fare charged because the carrier is unable to fulfil its part of the contract.

While some parties maintain that the provisions of Article 19 only apply to baggage, it’s not what it says. What is not clearly understood is that the compensation is only payable for damage that arises from delay. This applies equally to passengers, baggage or cargo.
It seems to me that the Convention has established that the carrier escapes liability if the cause of damage (which must include losing of the baggage) is beyond his control. Applying the same principle to a delayed flight should not be too hard. It is part of the fundamentals of these Conventions. By Henry Tours, Aviation Consultant

Copyright © Insurance Times and Investments® Vol:23.11 1st November, 2010
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