For most fliers, the wait to get to the in-flight toilet can seem like an eternity. Imagine being in a rush and having to go through long waiting periods? Well, that sounds bad. But things can get much worse. Imagine having to reach the in-flight toilet after a long wait and finding that it isn’t in working order. This can prove to be a horrible experience, especially when the flight has been forced to delay take-off as a result of the malfunctioning toilet.
As a passenger, you can become quite distressed.
There’s good news!
According to flight compensation solicitors, passengers should never hesitate to claim in such situations. The soliciting firm clearly stated that broken toilets do not fall under the “extraordinary circumstance” exclusion. However, many carriers do use that an excuse.
EC Regulation 261/2004 does state that compensation isn’t due to the passenger if the disruption was caused as a result of extraordinary circumstances, such as severe weather or any other even beyond the carrier’s control. In other words, the airline should be directly responsible for the disruption.
What that means is an event that is part of the carrier’s daily operations or within its control cannot be considered an extraordinary circumstance. So, for instance, the failure to restock toilet paper would be the carrier’s fault.
Similarly, a locked toilet would also be the carrier’s fault, and any delay caused as a result would be the carrier’s fault too.
In such cases, the carrier is obliged to pay compensation to the affected passengers if the delay lasts for 3 hours or more and if the flight is departing from the UK or arriving at the UK. Also, the carrier has to be EU-based.
Case in point
A British Airways flight from London to the Caribbean was once held up due to a lack of toilet paper. The 5-hour delay ended up having a knock-on effect on the return service. Needless to say, the passengers were inconvenienced. Also, BA had to foot a bill of £290,000.
Case in point is a perfect example of the scenario that was discussed earlier. BA was responsible for the delay and as a result, had the responsibility of paying delay compensation to its passengers.
Cabin crew state that there are also situations when the passenger is at fault for causing toilet trouble. Is the airline responsible for paying up compensation in such circumstances? Well, yes, and it’s because the airline is responsible for cleaning toilets no matter what. The passenger cannot be held accountable unless severe damage has been done.
A dirty toilet caused due to improper flushing or any other act has to be attended to by the airline staff. Any delay caused due to the failure to do so will make the carrier liable for compensation.
So, if passengers find themselves delayed significantly due to toilet troubles, they can confidently claim for compensation. The airline is obligated to provide compensation since this is not an extraordinary circumstance.