Ryanair passenger gets 20,000 euros after falling from moving staircase

Avatar photo

A woman was seriously injured after falling down the stairs of a Ryanair plane as she disembarked at Alicanteearly 2020. The court of Commerce of Seville, Spain, ruled that under Article 17 of the Montreal Convention, Ryanair had to compensate the victim 20,170 euros.

According to Spanish media, the victim suffered serious fractures to his tibia and fibula in the accident, requiring three days of hospitalization and two surgeries. It was specified that the Ryanair plane was equipped with “built-in steps that open under the left front door”. It is true that the low cost stands out to the extent that many of its Boeing 737s are equipped with these Running boards integrated which can be quite steep to cross.

The company argued that the stairs leading to the plane were in perfect working order and that instructions had been provided to passengers before disembarkation. The court nevertheless ruled that, whatever the cause of the accident, there was no reason to exonerate the airline. The amount of compensation requested, 31,230 euros, was reduced, with the court awarding the victim 18,968 euros in personal damage and a further 1,202 euros in medical costs.

The injured passenger’s negligence could have been an exculpatory circumstance for the airline, but in this case the court found that Ryanair failed to prove the passenger’s negligence. The Irish low cost company has been recognized for having developed methodologies to low cost in order to maintain competitive prices, but the court concluded that the level of respect and concern for safety was not corresponding. The ruling suggests that airlines could now face stricter judgments against them, even in cases where they have no control over the root cause of an accident.

John Walker Avatar