Skip to main content

Air Passengers (Liability)

Volume 986: debated on Monday 16 June 1980

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

39.

asked the Secretary of State for Trade what are the current limits, expressed in £ sterling, of liability for air passengers on scheduled international flights under the Warsaw Convention/Hague Protocol; when last these were increased ; and whether he is taking any action to secure agreement to a further increase.

The Warsaw Convention of 1929 set a limit of liability of 125,000 Poincare gold francs—equivalent at present to £4,836—and this was revised by the Hague Protocol of 1955 to 250,000 Poincare gold francs—equivalent at £9,672. The convention, however permits airlines to enter into a special contract with its passengers to raise the limit of liability and United Kingdom airlines are required by virtue of a standard condition in air transport licences to contract in respect of international carriage for a limit of not less than US$58,000—about £25,000. The largest proportion of international carriage by air is now subject to this limit or higher ones.

The United Kingdom supports the adoption of the 1975 Montreal Protocol No. 3 which would raise the Warsaw-Hague limit to 100,000 special drawing rights—about £56,000—but this is not yet in force. The Civil Aviation Authority has recently published a proposal that limit set by the relevant condition in air transport licences should be revised to 100,000 special drawing rights, and consultations are now in process.