Disabled woman sues Kelowna airport, Westjet for dropping her | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Disabled woman sues Kelowna airport, Westjet for dropping her


A woman with disabilities is suing WestJet and the Kelowna airport, alleging airline employees dropped her while lifting her from a seat on her plane.

Michelle MacGugan flew to Kelowna in July 2021 from Toronto and said she made "special booking" arrangements with WestJet beforehand. She said she would need assistance boarding and exiting the plane with specialized equipment, according to a statement of claim filed in BC Supreme Court.

While loading at Toronto Pearson Airport, flight crew found the equipment was not working, so she was carried down the aisle to the ninth row of the plane, she said, only for staff to discover she wouldn't fit in the seat.

MacGugan was carried back to the loading ramp and "dropped," where she remained as other passengers walked by and over her, according to court documents.

Upon arrival at Kelowna International Airport, employees also weren't able to operate the equipment needed, so they tried to manually lift her from her seat, "dropping her between two seats," according to her claim.

She claims the airports, WestJet and eight unnamed employees were negligent in their duties and left her with injuries both physically and emotionally. The claim also includes Transport Canada and two unnamed companies as defendants.

MacGugan's lawyer did not respond in time for publication. Westjet also didn't respond to interview requests.

None of her claims have been proven in court, but she's seeking costs for damages, lost wages and healthcare costs.

None of the defendants have responded in court.

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