An Australian man is suing American Airlines for $100,000 after the airline reportedly seated him next to two overweight passengers for a 14-hour flight.
Michael Anthony Taylor, 67, claimed the airline refused to allow him to change seats, resulting in him “crouching, kneeling, bracing or standing” for much of the flight from Sydney to Los Angeles, the Sydney Daily Daily Telegraph reported.
Though Taylor said he had a window seat, he alleged that the cramped quarters worsened his scoliosis and led to back injuries and bruising to his neck.
“I don’t hold any malice towards the people in the seats next to me—they’d paid for a ticket too,” he told the Australian paper. “The airline could have put me in a crew seat or moved people around but they did nothing.”
American Airlines told The New York Post that the Boeing 777’s 310 seats were occupied when it took off on December 28, 2015.
“We just received the lawsuit and we are reviewing the allegations,” the airline told The Post in a statement.
Thomas Janson, Taylor’s attorney, said he hopes this suit will push airlines to make their economy class seating more comfortable for everyone. Janson added that Taylor’s claim falls under the Montreal Convention, a 1999 treaty that compensates airline passengers for “accidents.”
“If Michael is successful, this throws open the doors to potentially a large amount of cases against airlines and how they’ve designed their seating and how they seat passengers,” Janson predicted. “There will be a huge outcry against the way airlines furnish their cabins, particularly in economy.”
[Featured Image: Associated Press ]