Airline sued after 'squashing' man beside obese passengers

Taylor, who was seated at the window, claims he experienced pain, injuries and discomfort during the 14-hour flight.

In 2015, a Brisbane man sued Etihad after he "injured his back after sitting next to an obese man who coughed a lot" on a flight from Sydney to Dubai.

In the Australian case, Taylor claims that flight attendants refused to allow him to change seats when he was sat next to a passenger described in the lawsuit as "grossly obese" on a flight from Sydney to Los Angeles, according to media reports.

"Mr. Taylor asked the cabin crew on numerous occasions if he could sit in another passenger's seat, or sit on one of the crew seats, or sit in the aisle or even to sit on the toilet seat to alleviate the pain and discomfort that he was suffering from". He says he has since suffered back injuries, neck pain and injuries, ongoing discomfort and the aggravation of pre-existing scoliosis - curvature of the spine.

The Boeing 777 took off from Sydney on December 28, 2015, with all 310 seats occupied, the airline said.

According to the court documents, Taylor says that the bodies of the passengers next to him "spilt over and encroached" into his seat and had to "stand up, crouch, kneel, and lean forward" during his 14 hour flight.

He is suing the airline because he says he asked cabin crew several times to be moved to another seat, but was denied. "On each occasion, he was refused and rebuffed".

The world's biggest airline is being sued for more than $100,000 (£77,300) by Michael Anthony Taylor.

"The airline could have put me in a crew seat or moved people around but they did nothing".

In a statement to the NY Post, the airline said, "We just received the lawsuit and we are reviewing the allegations".

Janson added that Taylor's claim falls under the Montreal Convention, a 1999 treaty that compensates airline passengers for "accidents".

"Given the small amount of area that passengers are afforded particularly when they fly in economy, and for that to be invaded by another passenger, the Montreal Convention we contend is relevant in this matter", he said.

  • Zachary Reyes