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OST Docket Filings for March 20, 2017


Applications and Renewals:

Benjamin Edelman v American - Carrier-Imposed Charges as Tax Complaint

Surinam Airways - Suriname-US Renewal

Answers and Replies:

Air Namibia - Supplement No. 2 (Diplomatic Note)

Cebu Pacific Air - DOT Granting Equivalent Alternative Determination Request (Stowage of Manual Folding Wheelchairs)

Notices of Action Taken:


Notices and Orders:

Reporting of Data for Mishandled Baggage and Wheelchairs and Scooters Transported in
Aircraft Cargo Compartments; Extension of Compliance Date
- Final Rule

Air Namibia Pty (Ltd)

OST-2017-0028 - Exemption - Namibia-US Codesharing with a US or Foreign Carrier

March 20, 2017

Supplement No. 2

Air Namibia hereby submits this supplement to its pending application for an exemption in the captioned docket. Attached is the Government of the Republic of Namibia’s diplomatic note designating Air Namibia for service under the US-Namibia Air Transport Agreement.

Counsel: Pillsbury Winthrop, Charles Donley, 202-663-8448


Benjamin Edelman v American Airlines

OST-2017-0037 - Carrier-Imposed Charges as Tax Complaint

March 20, 2017

Complaint of Benjamin Edelman

This complaint arises out of false statements by American Airlines in the marketing of air travel, including persisting in substantially the same false statements of “tax” about which I previously complained as early as 2011, and which AA has repeatedly promised to have ceased.

Greater civil penalties are required to motivate AA to cease the false statements at issue. AA’s continued false statements should be understood as resulting from the company’s considered and intentional decision to focus its legal and management efforts elsewhere, rather than fully searching for and remediating the false statements presented here. For example, with greater interest in fixing these problems, AA could have hired outside auditors to check the entirety of its customer-facing operations, to scan outgoing emails, to review message templates, and more. AA’s actions indicate that the company views DOT fines as just a cost of doing business, and that AA thinks that the management or technical effort required to find and fix all its false statements is more costly than the DOT fines likely to result. Greater civil penalties are appropriate in order to reiterate the seriousness of both the underlying violations and the remarkable continuation of the violations even after promising DOT that the problems were in the past.

I ask that the Department of Transportation:

  1. Exercise its authority under 49 USC 41712 to open an investigation of AA for having engaged in the unfair or deceptive practices described above;
  2. Order American Airlines to refund to ticket purchasers all monies represented to ticket purchasers as “taxes” or government-imposed fees, but not actually remitted to governments;
  3. Require AA to examine the entirety of its web site, email templates, customer service training materials, customer relations template replies, and other customer-facing statements in search of similar misrepresentations, and to report to DOT the methods it used for such examination and any further problems it found; and
  4. Impose appropriate civil penalties, in an amount reflecting the gravity of the misrepresentation in light of prior DOT orders in which AA promised that this problem was resolved and would not recur.

By: Benjamin Edelman

OST-2013-0213 - Carrier-Impost Surcharges as Tax on Award Bookings

January 14, 2012: Fuel Surcharges Mischaracterized as Tax
July 17, 2012: Fuel Surcharges Mischaracterized as Tax and Other Price Advertising Violations


Cebu Air, Inc. d/b/a Cebu Pacific Air

OST-2008-0273 - 14 CFR 382.67 and 382.123

March 20, 2017

DOT Granting Equivalent Alternative Determination Request of Cebu Pacific Air

This letter addresses the request of Cebu Air, Inc. d/b/a Cebu Pacific Air on January 5, 2017, for an indefinite extension of the Department's January 11, 2016, equivalent alternative determination concerning the requirements for stowage of a passenger's manual folding wheelchair referred to in 14 CFR 382.67 and 382.123 of the Department's Air Carrier Access Act regulation. By this letter, we are granting Cebu Pacific's request.

By: Livaughn Chapman


Reporting Ancillary Airline Passenger Revenues

RITA 2011-0001

Issued March 2, 2017 | On File at Federal Register March 20, 2017

Final Rule

The Department of Transportation is amending its regulations by extending the compliance date of its final rule on reporting of data for mishandled baggage and wheelchairs in aircraft cargo compartments from January 1, 2018 to January 1, 2019. Under that final rule, the mishandled-baggage data that air carriers are required to report changed, from the number of Mishandled Baggage Reports and the number of domestic passenger enplanements to the number of mishandled bags and the number of enplaned bags. The rule also requires separate statistics for mishandled wheelchairs and scooters used by passengers with disabilities and transported in aircraft cargo compartments. This extension is in response to a request by Airlines for America and Delta.

By: Judith Kaleta



Surinaamse Luchtvaart Maatshappij N.V. (Surinam Airways)

OST-1996-1095 - Exemption - Suriname-US Scheduled Passenger

March 20, 2017

Application for Renewal of Exemption

Surinam Airways has been granted exemption authority to operate scheduled service between points in Suriname and the coterminal points New York/Newark; Orlando/Sanford, FL and Miami, Florida, via one or more of the following intermediate points: Georgetown, Guyana; Port-of-Spain, Trinidad and Tobago; Curacao; Aruba; Sint Maarten; Bonaire; Sint Eustatius; Saba; Barbados; and Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

Surinam Airways is qualified to operate the services proposed. It is 100 percent owned and controlled by the Government of Suriname. The carrier has been operating scheduled and charter services between Suriname and other points, on the one hand, and the United States, on the other, for many years. It also operates an A340-300 between Suriname and Europe. It operates three B737-300 aircraft which are on lease; these B737 aircraft are used in its Western Hemisphere services. The B737 are configured with 8-16 Business class seats and 100-118 economy class seats. The United
States and the Government of Suriname have entered into an open skies air transport agreement. That agreement is dated July 8, 2013. The carrier has had no accidents in the last ten years.

Counsel: Herbert Rosenthal, 202-744-3833


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