Vernon, B.C. passenger alleges Air Canada changed story on cancelled flight to avoid payout

WATCH ABOVE: The Canadian Transportation Agency has announced it is looking into allegations that airlines aren't accurately reporting flight delays and cancellations. An Okanagan man is one of the Canadians looking for answers.

The Canadian Transportation Agency has announced Thursday it is looking into allegations that airlines are not accurately reporting the reasons for flight delays and cancellations.

An Okanagan man is one of those Canadians looking for answers after he was denied compensation for a cancelled Air Canada flight.

Ray Cusmano is speaking out after Air Canada denied his claim for compensation under Canada’s new Air Passenger Protection Regulations.

‘A systemic strategy’: Air Canada customers say claims wrongly denied under new passenger rules

The Vernon man was headed to Cancun from Vancouver in early January when, he says, his flight was delayed and then cancelled.

“They sent me emails in regards to our flight being cancelled and delayed and it was clearly for maintenance reasons, for plane maintenance, and they had to actually bring another plane in,” Cusmano said.

“They gave us all the information on how to claim.”

However, he said when he tried to claim the $1,000 in compensation under the new regulations, Air Canada shut him down, changing its story on what caused problems with his flight.

“I just got the reply back saying that because it was due to weather, they are not covering it,” he said.

“They are backtracking, of course.”

Canadian Transportation Agency opens investigation into air passenger complaints over flight delays

The Canadian Transportation Agency is pledging to investigate whether the causes of flight delays and cancellations are being misrepresented by the airlines, after complaints about compensation issues under the new regulations made national headlines.

However, the regulatory body pointed out delays and cancellations for safety reasons, including some mechanical issues, aren’t eligible for mandatory compensation.

That raises questions about whether Cusmano’s claim for the cancellation, which was originally blamed on aircraft maintenance, would be eligible.

Changes to air passengers’ rights are now in effect. Here’s what you should know

In a statement, Air Canada said its policy is to fully abide by regulations and that it has put the necessary policies and procedures in place to do so.

The airline said it has no additional comment to offer as it deals with customers directly.

Cusmano ultimately took off on his vacation a day late.

He’s still hoping the airline might change course and pay him out.

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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