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Flying with Ease: Airport Wheelchair Travel 2

Posted on: April 10th, 2014 by LAMedicalBlogger

Wheelchair-plane-travel-2

LA Medical is continuing on with wheelchair travel and making sure your needs are being taken care of by the airport or airline.  Every airline has a list of reservation requirements that vary for rules or regulations.  LA Medical wants you to be aware of certain regulations such as providing medical certificates and battery storage for power mobility products.

If you or someone you know has a condition where they require additional assistance on the aircraft, they may need to provide the airline or travel agent with a medical certificate.  Under certain conditions, you may need to apply and receive a medical certificate from your doctor.  You may need to be examined by an FAA-designated Aviation Medical Examiner (AME) to receive a medical certificate before you board a plane. You must state if you need or have one of these:

  • Medical oxygen while on-board
  • If you have a communicable disease or infection
  • Require medical attention during the entire flight

Every airline has different rules and regulations to work with you in these predicaments.  Contact your airline or travel agent with any questions.

Battery operated wheelchairs or mobility scooters must be looked at more in-depth while going through security. Newer power wheelchairs and mobility scooters have lithium-ion batteries installed which makes security checkpoints go a little smoother.  But what do you do if you have an older machine?

While going through security, your wheelchair or scooter will not have to be disconnected from the battery, but your equipment must have an effective method of preventing accidental activation during transport or flight such as removing the key, turning on a kill switch, removing the power arm or taping a switch in a closed position.

Wet cell batteries, or spillable, require special preparations to be transported.  The battery must be disconnected and terminals must be protected from causing an electrical short.  Sometimes wet batteries will be transported in a special box to reduce damage and leaky batteries.  Dry cell, or non-spillable, batteries have fewer requirements for transport and handling.  Dry cell batteries can stay plugged in during transport.

Contact LA Medical today with all of your mobility questions!

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