Dad slams British Airways after baggage handlers broke disabled girl’s wheelchair and then demanded he pay for help getting through HeathrowFebruary 21, 2018
The damage meant quadriplegic Bethany, who also has Cerebral Palsy, couldn’t reach the joystick she needs to move the chair around as the arm was shattered and dragging on the ground.
Dad Christian claims he was then told by British Airways that he would have to pay for a porter if he wanted assistance getting through Heathrow’s Terminal Five as the airline staff could not help.
It meant he had to push daughter Bethany, two large cases and their hand luggage alone after they landed in England.
Christian, from Burnham, Buckinghamshire, said: “The worst thing is the BA staff told me I’d have to go and get a porter and pay for it if I wanted help.
“They left me, my daughter and our suitcases to get out of Heathrow on our own and watched us go.
“Bethany was absolutely mortified, her wheelchair is her only way of getting around, it’s her whole independence.
“It’s like they took her legs away. It’s just wrong on all levels.”
The family estimate the handlers have caused around £400 worth of damage.
Bethany was only able to go to school on their return because Christian spent £65 on nuts and bolts to temporarily fix the arm so his daughter could reach the controls.
Christian added: “My daughter had just gone through deep brain stimulation and this trip was a treat after her operation to watch some ice hockey games in Canada and at the end of it she just got let down in such a big way.
After contacting the airline, Christian was told to complete an online form and wait ten days for a response.
He blasted it as “unacceptable” given the circumstances.
A BA spokesman said: “We work extremely hard to provide customers with individual needs with the help and assistance they require during their journey.
“We’ve apologised to the McGill family for their experience and are in the process of getting the wheelchair repaired.”