Most travelers know of Duty Free stores in airports all over the world, but did you know that some airports have museums, ice skating rinks and hospitals? Better yet, have you ever been to one of these high-ranked airports?
Abrams Landau‘s Education Director Stephanie Yoon recently went to South Korea’s Incheon Airport which has all these amenities and more!
The Airports Council International (ACI) has consistently given Incheon Airport of South Korea high rankings in various categories in its Airport Service Quality (ASQ) Awards. For instance, Incheon Airport has even received special recognition by the ACI Director and is listed in the General Roll of Excellence for having been ranked first for over five years. Incheon Airport ranks 3rd in the 2017 Skytrax World Airport Awards, or the Passengers Choice Awards. The Skytrax World Airport Awards utilize large customer satisfaction surveys on a global scale with over 13.82 million airport survey questionnaires completed annually.
Incheon Airport offers a variety of unique amenities and facilities including a spa, movie theater, golf course, indoor gardens, ice skating rink, and even a Korean cultural heritage museum. In addition, Incheon Airport will utilize life-sized robots to aid customers and keep floors clean. The life-sized robots, known as Troika, are made by LG electronics and will be in use starting July of 2017. Troika assists customers by providing flight information, escorting people to gates if necessary, and displaying weather news and airport maps.
If you, or someone you care for, has been injured in an accident at an airport, whether in the terminal, on the AOA, on an airplane or other air travel related accident and there are questions about what laws apply, e-mail or call us at Abrams Landau, Ltd. (703-796-9555) at once.
Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) and other Washington, D.C. area airports are undergoing a technological revolution to replace 1940s technology and propel your next flight into the 21st century. The Federal Aviation Administration and aviation community have a joint program to modernize the airways. Soon radio technology will be replaced by more precise GPS in order to modernize the National Airspace System. The program is called “NextGen,” and it consists of equipment and procedures for getting your plane from gate to gate. This systemic improvement will result in seconds saved, gallons of jet fuel not wasted, and CO2 emissions prevented. However, as pointed out in an article in Time magazine, the push to “Modernize the Skies” may add up to be “the most comprehensive investment in the backbone of the nation’s skies in history.”
For example, instead of leaving miles of space between airline jets, the newer GPS system will allow for more precise jet placement and spacing. The new NextGen system gives flight controllers updates every second, instead of every 5-12 seconds, as under the older system. Also, with jets traveling t speeds of 500 mph, this is a huge safety improvement. Flights can now be safely sent off more closely. Furthermore, approach and landing protocols have been updated to use the GPS system, which shaves minutes off flights. For a snapshot on taxi times at Washington Dulles International Airport (“IAD”), click here for the DC area airport’s NextGen Scorecard.
This NextGen technology may also clear the way for autonomous flights, addressing the issue of drones getting in the day of passenger aircraft (or each other!). With over 21 million passengers per year, this increase in safety and efficiency will pay huge dividends. Dulles Airport is in the top 25 busiest airports in North America, both with regard to passenger traffic AND cargo volume. Furthermore, one FAA study estimates the benefits of the NextGen program to be $160.6 billion through the year 2030, including a reduction in the use of jet fuel in the amount of 2.8 billion gallons. Less time sitting on the runway or holding in the air saves airfreight companies money. Shaving minutes off flight times for commercial passengers through the use of the NextGen system not only translates into money saved for the airlines, but benefits passengers as well. Saving time, money and the planet while increasing safety are the reasons that the NextGen system seems to be a success on all fronts.
Reagan National Airport, located in Arlington, VA, has been around for more than 75 years now. Originally built to “comfortably” handle 15 to 16 million passengers a year, it is now serving more than 23 million, and the numbers are only growing. It serves more passengers than Dulles International Airport, an airport 14 times its size.
In order to better accommodate the significant increase in passengers, a $1 billion renovation has ensued and it is expected to be completed in 2021. The project will include a new commuter concourse on the airport’s north side. According to the Washington Post, they will construct a building to replace Gate 35X, “a notorious choke point where travelers, in rain, sun or snow, are required to board shuttle buses to get to their planes.” 1.2 million travelers pass through this “confusing” gate each year.
The project also includes road improvements, a new parking garage and changes to National Hall, the main, glass-enclosed walkway on the concourse level of Terminals B and C that features shops and restaurants. The upgrade will be paid for by airlines, not taxpayers. Since some of the work will require blocking traffic lanes, much of the work will be done at night.
Have you ever had to take out loose change from your pockets before going through airport screenings? Most likely you were in a rush, having trouble keeping track of all the different items you had to take out and take off and place haphazardly into the security bins, and were more concerned about not forgetting your wallet, watch and electronics. Ever wondered what happened to your coins? Did you know that there’s a specific law about what should happen to your coins?
49 USC § 44945(a) Disposition of Unclaimed Money.— [U]nclaimed money recovered at any airport security checkpoint shall be retained by the Transportation Security Administration and shall remain available until expended for the purpose of providing civil aviation security as required in this chapter.
According to a TSA report, “Unclaimed money is money that passengers inadvertently leave behind at airport screening checkpoints. In most cases, this consists of coins that passengers remove from their pockets so that metal detectors do not sound.”
An ABC Newsarticle wrote, “The biggest donors to the TSA last year  were passengers at Los Angeles International Airport, who left behind $55,086.39 in change. Folks at Miami International Airport left $50,955.58 and at New York City’s John F. Kennedy International Airport left behind $43,715.81. Approximately $9,265.25 of the total funds left behind and collected by the TSA was foreign currency.”
In total, approximately $765,000 was collected in loose change in 2015. Congress continues to debate the Loose Change Act, which would give the money to certain non-profit organizations instead.
When airline employees are injured off the airport premises and they are not charged with some duty for their employer, they can still bring a lawsuit against the unsafe defendants who caused their injury.
In this airline employee’s case, she sustained a fractured left wrist in a motor vehicle collision, requiring placement of an external fixator.
She missed four months from work at her long time job as a customer service representative for United Airlines at Dulles Airport.
Although her fracture healed in good alignment, she continues to experience intermittent pain and is unable to make a complete fist with her left hand. Her orthopedic expert testified by videotape deposition.
Three insurance policies applied:
GEICO offered $25,000 liability limits on behalf of defendant.
The Hartford offered their total underinsurance coverage exposure of $75,000.
Foremost Insurance would offer only $25,000 of their $50,000 underinsurance coverage limits, so the case went to trial.
Special damages included medical bills of $28,277 and lost earnings of $15,806. The plaintiff’s policy limits demand was for $150,000 (total insurance available). However, the insurance companies would only offer $125,000.
The Virginia jury’s verdict was for $243,000.
If you or someone you know or care for works for an airline and has been injured in an accident off the airport premises, and there are questions as to what laws apply, email or call Abrams Landau, Ltd. at once (703-796-9555).
Airline ground crew and airport personnel are vulnerable on the air operations area (“AOA”) because of the numerous vehicles that are maneuvering — sometimes in very tight spaces.
In addition, most of these workers are wearing ear protection which limits their ability to hear danger coming from behind. With jet engines running, it is sometimes impossible to feel the vibrations of an oncoming vehicle.
So if employee cannot feel a large vehicle coming, or hear it coming, or smell it coming, then they must rely on their sense of sight, which may be distracted due to luggage carts, fuel tankers, small jets, midfield people movers, and other vehicles on the AOA.
This is why there are injuries to airport and airline workers on the runway area, even when they are exercising vigilance for their safety and that of other people on airport grounds.
If you or someone you know works on an airport operations area and has been injured due to no fault of your own, please email or call Abrams Landau, Ltd. at once.
Despite being in a crash that left his vehicle inoperable, Doug Landau plans on going forward with tomorrow’s case in the District of Columbia for a client with severe cardiac impairment. To read more about the accident, in which Landau held onto the steering wheel while flying upside down, and to see pictures of the aftermath, go our sports injury site. Lawyer Landau was wearing his seatbelt, and was able to extricate himself from the driver’s seat. He clambered up the embankment and was able to help the responding State Troopers complete their investigation and reports.
Airport injury lawyer Doug Landau is used to traveling. After all, since he is licensed to practice law up and down the East Coast, he often travels to meet with clients or try cases for injured airline employees who live, work, or have been injured in a state other than Landau’s home state of Virginia.
That’s why when Landau recently traveled to Minneapolis St. Paul to compete in the 2015 USAT National Duathlon Championship, he was not impacted by jet lag or fatigue.
In fact, Landau placed third in his age category, earning him a spot on the podium and qualifying him for the 2016 World Championships.
Last year, Landau qualified for the 2015 World Championships which will be held this October in Australia.
Landau understands that travel to Australia will not be a walk in the park. He intends to arrive at the race venue four days in advance — one day for each two time zones — so as to be fully acclimated by race day.
Abrams Landau clients who fly internationally are well aware of the effects crossing multiple time zones can have on the body. In fact, Landau may be picking the brains of his clients for their advice on the best ways to be race ready when he arrives in Adelaide, Australia in the Fall so he can represent the United States of America proudly and competitively.
Which Dulles Airport area middle school sent a team of 8th graders to compete in the 2015 We the People competition on Constitutional Law?
Rachel Carson Middle School in Herndon Virginia!
Asked once again to coach the team of young scholars, airport lawyer Doug Landau spent the past several months working with the kids on their knowledge of the judicial system as well as the skills necessary to present clear and articulate answers to questions posed throughout the competition.
The 2014 team from Rachel Carson placed third in the nation, a tough act to follow in 2015.
But this year’s team was up to the challenge! After winning the state championship in January, it was back to the books for the rest of the winter. The kids placed among the top three teams in the National competition held at George Mason University on April 19, 2015.
Then it was on to the National Invitationals the next morning in Fairfax, Virginia.
The team from Herndon took home the top prize, claiming the spot as the best in the country when it comes to Constitutional Law!
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