Thursday, February 23, 2006

Canadian Transportation Agency and check-in times

In a January 31, 2006 decision, the Canadian Transportation Agency ruled on the efficacy of a carrier's rules regarding check-in times and gate appearance times. It decided that Air Canada: a) did not have the right to deny boarding to passengers who arrived after the carrier's "recommended" target of checking in at least 60 minutes prior to departure, but b) would have had the right to deny boarding to a passenger who did not comply with the carrier's rule that he "must" be at the gate at least 25 minutes prior to flight. The decision can be found at
Shortly after the decision was released, news coverage of it caused the CTA concern that its ruling had been interpreted as meaning that check-in times need not be honoured. As a result, it issued a clarifying Press Release, which can be found at

(Originally posted by Doug Crozier)

Friday, February 17, 2006

Authorisation to shoot down aircrafts void

German Federal Contitutional Curt held that § 14.3 of the German Aviation Security Act (Luftsicherheitsgesetz – LuftSiG), which authorised armed forces to shoot down aircrafts intended to be used as weapons against human lives, was incompatible with the Basic Law and hence void. This was decided by the First Senate of the Court in its judgment 1 BvR 357/05 of 15 February 2006. The Federal Constitutional Court held that the Federation lacks legislative competence to issue such regulation in the first place. According to the Court, Article 35.2 sentence 2 and 35.3 sentence 1 of the Basic Law (Grundgesetz – GG), which regulates the employment of the armed forces for the control of natural disasters or in the case of especially grave accidents, does not permit the Federation to order missions of the armed forces with specifically military weapons. Moreover, § 14.3 of the Aviation Security Act is incompatible with the fundamental right to life and with the guarantee of human dignity to the extent that the use of armed force affects persons on board the aircraft who are not participants in the crime. By the state’s using their killing as a means to save others, they are treated as mere objects, which denies them the value that is due to a human being for his or her own sake (Press release no. 11/2006 - for full text of judgement see