The passenger’s flight was certainly not as bright as this sky. (Photo: Austrian Airlines/Facebook )
When Mary Dordieski boarded her Austrian Airlines flight from Chicago to Macedonia last summer, she had no idea that she’d land with a broken leg. But that’s what happened — and according to Perth Now, she and her mother, Svetlana, are now suing the airline for being negligent in accommodating her on a flight.
The key fact is that Mary has spina bifida, a condition in which part of the spinal cord is exposed through a gap in the backbone, thus making it difficult to move. Consequently, she uses a wheelchair to get around, and she also has limited speaking abilities.
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Knowing this, Mary and her mother got Mary a bulkhead seat — a seat where no one is in front of you — which would make it easier to get around. The flight would have been fine, but the problems started when their flight was redirected to Toronto, due to mechanical issues. The Dordieskis had to fly out of Toronto the next day, but unfortunately, they could not reserve a bulkhead seat for Mary, as they had done on their original journey.
According to Svetlana, she explicitly told Austrian Airlines that her daughter would not be able to fit into her seat. But rather than taking action to secure a proper seat for Mary, the airline told the crew to lift Mary from her wheelchair and simply place her in her seat — thus skirting around the original issue.
The Dordieskis told the airline that Mary could not fit into these seats, yet they placed her in one anyway. (Photo: Austrian Airlines/Facebook)
That was their big mistake. Due to her condition, Mary can’t bend her right knee, and she and her mother claim that the airline crew forced her leg to bend in order for her to fit in the seat. When they landed in Vienna, they realized that her leg was broken.
The family hopes that they win the case they are filing, not least so that they can pay the extremely high medical bills.