Air Canada Says No Room for Boy’s Wheelchair

Air Canada said ten-year-old Chase Baker’s wheelchair would not fit on their airplane. Sept. 7, 2012. (CTV)
CTV British Columbia

Air Canada is encountering turbulence from a boy with disabilities and his parents after the airline said they could not fit his wheelchair on their plane.

Ten-year-old Chase Baker has spinal muscular dystrophy and wasn’t supposed to live past age two, and now he depends on a sophisticated wheelchair for transportation.

Recently, his mother Tracey Chapple booked a Disney Cruise for herself and Baker, but days before their departure Air Canada said they wouldn’t be able to fly the boy home from Los Angeles after the cruise.

The airline said his wheelchair can’t fit on the plane.

But, Chapple said the airline didn’t tell them of the problem until it was too late.

“We worked with Air Canada, we had to go through their medical desk,” said Chapple. “We filled out all the proper medical forms (and) had our doctor send everything through.”

Chapple asked if there was anything the airline could do, but was told to try another airline.

“I called them back and said, ‘can you make any exceptions for us?’” said Chapple. “We’re booked and paid.”

In an email to CTV News, Air Canada said the plane used to fly from Los Angeles to Vancouver can’t accommodate chairs unable to fold due to space restrictions.

Determined to make the trip, Chapple said she has booked a flight home on WestJet.

WestJet would not comment on the case.

(With a reoprt from CTV’s Maria Weisgarber)

Reproduced from