Develop SOP to manage unruly passengers: DGCA to airlines

New Delhi, June 24 (IANS) Aviation regulator DGCA on Wednesday asked airline operators to develop new inflight procedures to manage on-board unruly passengers, who might be suffering from increased stress levels due to Covid-19.

According to the DGCA, passengers might be facing increased stress due to new procedures which have been instituted to carry on operations in Covid-19 environment.

This may lead to increased disputes between passengers or with the crew, the regulator cautioned.

Currently, CAR Section 3 Series M Part VI provides requirements on handling of unruly passengers.

“An increase in cases of unruly or disruptive passengers should be expected, either prior to departure or inflight,” the circular said.

“Such behaviour, in the context of pressures imposed by Covid-19 pandemic, may be less aggressive or intrusive than the normally exhibited unruly behaviour, hence extra attention and steps need to be devoted for the prevention and management of unruly passengers.”

Consequently, the regulator via a circular directed operators to develop inflight procedures to manage such situations and develop associated training procedures to train and sensitise the cabin crew.

“Cabin crew should be made aware of new issues, which may be encountered onboard including passengers refusing to continue wearing a face mask or covering in-light…,” the circular said.

Besides, the regulator directed airlines to develop inflight cabin crew training procedures to ensure passengers adhere to the health and safety guidelines.

“The operators should define SOP for on-board handling of unruly passengers in Covid-19 environment,” the circular said.

“Operators are advised to communicate their policy on handling unruly passengers as widely as possible, including but not limited to publishing on their website, during ticket purchase, check-in process (on-line, kiosks, check-in, agents, etc).”



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