Rules and liabilities of the aviation sector

Uaatjo Kaurimuje

Namibia is a signatory to the Warsaw Convention, the Hague Protocol, and the Montreal Convention.

These agreements define the liabilities of airlines.

If any registered luggage or goods are lost, damaged, or destroyed during air carriage, the airline is liable for compensation for any damages incurred.

Passengers often file complaints, citing “deficiency of service” due to issues like delayed flights, lost baggage, or even fatalities.

For example, suppose it is established there was a contract of carriage between the passenger and the airline, and the passenger’s property went missing while in the airline’s possession, the airline would be liable for the loss of that luggage.

When travelling with registered baggage, the passenger must check in the luggage and obtain a baggage ticket or tag.

This tag will display the departure and destination points of the luggage.

It is important to note that the carrier is only considered liable for carrying the baggage if the passenger has checked it in and received a baggage tag.

The baggage tag acts as proof of the contract of carriage between the passenger and the carrier, as it indicates the points of departure and destination of the luggage.

It is essential to note that airlines are not allowed to refuse people with disabilities or reduced mobility service, including their aids, devices and escorts, in the cabin.

However, such individuals or their representatives must inform the airline of their requirements at the time of booking.

Additionally, airlines must provide safety rules in an accessible format, which apply to people with disabilities or reduced mobility, along with any restrictions on their mobility equipment or carriage due to the aircraft’s size.

Airlines are required to gather all the necessary information about the specific requirements of passengers with disabilities or reduced mobility at the time of booking.

If you have a disability or reduced mobility, it is important to notify the airline of your needs at least 72 hours before the scheduled departure time.

Airlines are responsible for making suitable arrangements to assist people with disabilities with quick clearance and baggage delivery.

Additionally, airport operators must display signage throughout the airport in an unambiguous manner and provide ramps for easy access to ensure that passengers with disabilities can move around the airport with ease.

  • Uaatjo Kaurimuje is a consumer protection advocate and freelance writer. The views expressed above are her own.

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