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Did they give food? Luis Campos urges CAB to probe airlines for passenger rights violations during NAIA chaos

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Makati City Rep. Luis Campos Jr. has urged the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB) to investigate airline companies for possible violations of air passenger rights during the closure of Ninoy Aquino International Airport’s (NAIA) runway last week, which caused the cancellation and delay of hundreds of flights.

Campos made the call to CAB on Tuesday amid reports that several passengers affected by the NAIA runway closure did not receive food or assistance from their airlines.

Thousands of passengers were stranded at NAIA and other airports in the country starting August 17 when a Xiamen Airways flight skidded off the runway.

The lawmaker noted that the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) have issued Joint Administrative Order No. 01 Providing for a Bill of Rights for Air Passengers and Carrier Obligations.

“Stranded passengers are entitled to certain amenities in case of terminal delay, even if it is due to force majeure or circumstances beyond the airline’s control,” he said.

Under the AO, passengers are entitled to the following in case their flights are delayed for three hours, whether or not this was caused by the carrier:

– sufficient refreshment or meals, free phone calls, text or e-mails, and first aid, if necessary; and

– the chance to rebook or refund his/her ticket or be endorsed to another carrier

Under the AO, all airlines are also supposed to “provide customer service representatives who can address common problems, such as arranging for meals and hotel rooms for stranded passengers, settling denied boarding compensation, arranging luggage resolutions, and settling other routine claims or complaints on the spot.”

“Airlines clearly have obligations. And the CAB should now ascertain which carriers lived up to their duties, and which of them neglected passengers during the Aug. 17-18 disorder,” Campos said.

“If necessary, those found wanting should be penalized administratively by the CAB,” he added.