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Disabled British Airways Passenger Slams Airline After His Stoma Bag Leaked During 11-Hour Flight Because BA Gave Away His Assigned Seat

Disabled British Airways Passenger Slams Airline After His Stoma Bag Leaked During 11-Hour Flight Because BA Gave Away His Assigned Seat

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A British Airways passenger who requested a seat with additional legroom because he has a stoma bag fitted has slammed the airline after his seat was reassigned at the last minute, leaving him in a standard Economy seat that resulted in his stoma bag leaking during an 11-hour flight.

Mesha Moinirad has long suffered from severe Crohn’s and Colitis, but after battling the condition for many years, he eventually decided to have a stoma fitted – a special medical device that collects waste from the digestive system.

@mr.colitiscrohns Because of the position of my bag, we always book extra leg room seats for long-haul flights. This means I can let the bag fill without putting too much pressure on it. I was paying for them until someone informed me that if you have a disability, they will be allocated for free (and you get extra baggage allowance for medical supplies, by the way). I contacted @British Airways ♬ Solas X Interstellar – Gabriel Albuquerqüe

While the stoma has eased Mesha’s underlying digestive issues, living with a stoma bag comes with its own challenges, and Mesha has set about educating and supporting people who live or care for people with Irritable Bowel Disease (IBD).

Mesha says he feels “extremely let down” by British Airways after he recently spent around £1,000 to fly with the airline on a long overnight flight from Phoenix to London Heathrow and had requested an extra legroom seat due to his disability.

British Airways allows passengers with disabilities to pre-book their seats in advance for free, and the airline will even assign extra legroom seats to accommodate disabled passengers better.

But when Mesha got to the airport, he discovered that without any prior warning, BA had moved him to a standard Economy seat. When his fiancee attempted to explain the situation to the cabin crew, however, he claims they not only showed no understanding of Mesha’s plight but were also “extremely rude”.

Although some people fitted with a stoma bag can sit in a normal Economy seat without a problem, the positioning of Mesha’s bag meant that it kept filling up, requiring him to empty it six times during the flight in order to relieve some of the pressure.

Unfortunately, despite his best efforts, towards the end of the flight, the bag also leaked. After getting back home, Mesha called British Airways to complain, and the airline was only willing to offer him a £75 voucher to use on a future flight.

To make matters worse, an airport gate agent told Mesha that BA had sold his extra legroom seat to another passenger who had offered to pay extra, but a spokesperson for the airline said this wasn’t actually the case.

In fact, a customer service agent who had booked Mesha’s extra legroom seat had failed to confirm the seat because they used the incorrect code on BA’s reservation system. If the seat had been correctly confirmed, then BA says it never takes it away unless there are operational reasons.

In a statement, a spokesperson for British Airways told us: “We’ve been in contact with our customer to apologise for their experience, which was the result of human error and have offered a gesture of goodwill.”

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