Proving a point, disabled man flies alone with airline he sued

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Osaka – A disabled man who filed an unsuccessful damages suit against Singapore Airlines over not being permitted to board an aircraft because he was traveling without assistance flew from Kansai Airport to Singapore alone Monday, using the airline.

Masayuki Ota, 38, of Nishinomiya, Hyogo Prefecture, filed the suit in 2004, saying it was not fair that the firm prevented him from flying alone to Bangkok due to his disability.

Ota, a wheelchair user, suffers from cerebral palsy and has limited control of his limbs and difficulty speaking. He has been able to live alone since 1997 with assistance.

According to the Osaka High Court ruling, the airline’s officials prevented him from boarding shortly before departure to Bangkok from Kansai Airport in July 2003, claiming it would be difficult to evacuate him in case of an emergency because of his disabilities.

yomiuri.co.jp