Fly Jamaica likely to be hauled before Courts – CCAC
The embattled airline, Fly Jamaica, is likely to be taken to court over compensations owed to hundreds of passengers who were left stranded as a result of the crippling crash it encountered last November at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA) at Timehri, East Bank Demerara.
On Monday, Consumer Affairs Officer, Feyona Austin-Paul from the Competition and Consumer Affairs Commission (CCAC) explained that such action may be timely as months would have already elapsed.
Nevertheless, she said that the airline has been engaged by the Commission and, in fact, will be meeting next week to pave the way forward.
Initially, the airline had promised the Commission to begin payments in March but failed to do so due to lack of funds. In fact, subsequent to this announcement, Fly Jamaica even made their staffers redundant by March month end.
In light of this, the consumer officer explained, “They will be treated just like a normal supplier and the [Consumer] Act will be enforced against them”.
She noted that it was too early to determine whether the Commission will be forced to take the airline to court or if passengers themselves would have to make that move. Already, two lawsuits have been filed against the airline, with the most recent order issued in December.
That lawsuit was filed by a Canadian law firm to represent passengers who claimed they were injured during the crash landing at the airport.
The notice of the class action suit stated that it was seeking compensation for not only the passengers who were on board the flight OJ256 destined for Toronto, Canada, but the families who were affected as a result of the crash.
That lawsuit came days after Canadian firms Howie, Sacks and Henry and Camp Fiorante Matthews Mogerman filed a case against the airline for injuries and losses incurred as a result of the crash.
That lawsuit was filed on November 23, 2018.
Of the 120 passengers on board the Boeing 757 flight on November 9, 2018, along with eight crew members, at least six were injured during the crash landing.
An 86-year-old woman died one week after the incident as a result of brain swelling.
The flight left the CJIA for Toronto at about 02:10h on November 9, 2018, from the CJIA, but after reportedly encountering hydraulic issues, the pilot returned to the airport where the aircraft crash-landed about 02:53h.