Wednesday, December 02, 2015

Canada's Transportation Safety Board still awaiting progress on child restraints on airplanes: Recommendations came after Nunavut baby died from being thrown from mother's lap during crash

Six-month-old Isaac Appaqaq died in the Dec. 22 crash in Sanikiluaq.

Canada's Transportation Safety Board says it's satisfied Transport Canada is working on improving safety for children travelling in aircraft, but notes that nothing has been done yet to reduce risks identified following a fatal crash in Sanikiluaq.

The TSB released its report this past June on the crash in Sanilkiluaq, Nunavut, that happened just before Christmas 2012.

A Perimeter Aviation turbo-prop plane carrying seven passengers and two crew members crashed Dec. 22, 2012 about half a kilometre from the end of the runway.

Eight people survived with non-life threatening injuries. Six-month-old Isaac Appaqaq was thrown from his mother's lap in the crash and died from his injuries.

The TSB's first recommendation was for commercial air carriers to collect data on the number of infants and young children travelling on their aircraft. Transport Canada has said in its September update that it is still looking at ways to collect the data.

"The actions proposed by Transport Canada constitute a first step in the right direction," said Joseph Hincke, a member of the TSB board in a news release.

"However, efforts to enhance safety for infants and children will continue to be delayed until more detailed information is available on emerging trends about the carriage of children aboard aircraft."

Transport Canada also said it was working on the second recommendation, looking at ways to expand the range of child restraint systems on aircraft.

"Although the proposed actions may have some benefits, Transport Canada has not yet identified any specific solutions to ensure that infants and young children are provided with a level of safety comparable to adults," Hincke said.

Overall the TSB has rated Transport Canada's progress on its recommendations as satisfactory in intent, meaning the planned actions will achieve the safety goals when implemented, but as of yet nothing has been done to reduce the risks.


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