Michael Wukoschitz's blog

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Airline black list?

Following the recent aircraft crashes EU-Commission is considering to publish a black list of those airlines which lost their flight permission into one of the member states in the internet . According to British newspaper "The Guardian", traffic commissioner Jacques Barrot would prefer to activate the website as early as October 2005, but final decision may take until the end of the year.

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EU-Parliament voted against transfer of flight passenger data to Canda

The vote was meant as a protest against the fact that EU-Council and Commission are still refusing to grant the Parliament any right of codetermination in security issues. A similiar data transfer agreement with the U.S. has been challenged by the Parliament before the European Court of Justice.The judgement is expected by the end of the year.

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No tour operator liability for an accident

No tour operator liability for an accident of a two year old boy who slipped through the banisters of the hotel stairs: in a recent decision Austria's Supreme Court confirmed judgements of lower instance courts who both had dismissed a claim for compensation for pain and suffering based on the allegation that the tour operator had not provided sufficient security for children. Supreme court held that an advertisement emphasising favorable family rates would not justify increased expectations in regard to child security. Contractual safeguard obligations must not be overdrawn.

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Passengers' Rights Survey

A recently published survey carried out by the EU Commission showed that almost four out of ten citizens are not aware that they conclude a conctract with a transport company when purchasing a ticket and a majority doesn't know about the rights and obligations contained in such contract. The most used means of transport, namely local urban transport and inter-city rail transport have a more negative image whereas air transport has a posive image among most Europeans.

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Brisbane World's best Airport

IATA has chosen Brisbane Airport as world's best airport and bestowed the "Eagle Award". The airport is expecting 15 million passengers this year.

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Visitors Delayed

According to documents recently released, some visitors to the U.S. were delayed by immigration officers because the fingerprints in their passports were mismatched or smudged. However, Homeland Security Department pointed out that only a tiny fraction of visitors was affected by such problems.

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Liability for an accident at a water slide

Liability for an accident at a water slide was repudiated by Austria's Supreme Court (OGH): a swimming baths offering a water slide was not obliged to provide permanent supervision by its staff or video cameras. A stoplight system regulating access to the slide and sliding instructions displayed directly at the entrance of the slide were sufficent security measures. Safeguard obligations of a swimming baths must not be overdrawn.

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Seaquake alert via text message

A German company has developed a system to forewarn tourists against seaquakes via text message to their cell phones. The system is based on data provided by international seismological institutes.

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Machine-readable passport required

From 26. June 2005 all foreign travellers to USA who don't need visa must produce machine-readable passports, otherwise they may be rejected by immigration officers.

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No right of withdrawal from car hire contracts

Interpreting Art. 3(2) of the European Directive 97/7/EC on the protection of consumers in respect of distance contracts, European Court of Justice in a recent preliminary judgement (easyCar UK Ltd v. Office of Fair Trading) held that the exemption made in regard to "provison of transport services" includes contracts for the provision of car hire services. Consumers therefore have no unrestricted right of withdrawal within a specific period after conclusion of contract, even if same was concluded as a "distance contract" via the internet (ECJ 2005-03-10, C-336/03).

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