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105th Congress Report
2d Session HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES 105-456
AVIATION MEDICAL ASSISTANCE ACT OF 1998
March 20, 1998.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the
State of the Union and ordered to be printed
Mr. Shuster, from the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure,
submitted the following
R E P O R T
[To accompany H.R. 2843]
[Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]
The Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, to whom
was referred the bill (H.R. 2843) to direct the Administrator
of the Federal Aviation Administration to reevaluate the
equipment in medical kits carried on, and to make a decision
regarding requiring automatic external defibrillators to be
carried on, aircraft operated by air carriers, and for other
purposes, having considered the same, report favorably thereon
with an amendment and recommend that the bill as amended do
The amendment is as follows:
Strike out all after the enacting clause and insert in lieu
thereof the following:
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Act may be cited as the ``Aviation Medical Assistance Act of
SEC. 2. MEDICAL KIT EQUIPMENT AND TRAINING.
Not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment of this Act,
the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall
reevaluate regulations regarding (1) the equipment required to be
carried in medical kits of aircraft operated by air carriers, and (2)
the training required of flight attendants in the use of such
equipment, and, if the Administrator determines that such regulations
should be modified as a result of such reevaluation, shall issue a
notice of proposed rulemaking to modify such regulations.
SEC. 3. REPORTS REGARDING DEATHS ON AIRCRAFT.
(a) In General.--During the 1-year period beginning on the 90th day
following the date of the enactment of this Act, a major air carrier
shall make a good faith effort to obtain, and shall submit quarterly
reports to the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration on,
(1) The number of persons who died on aircraft of the air
carrier, including any person who was declared dead after being
removed from such an aircraft as a result of a medical incident
that occurred on such aircraft.
(2) The age of each such person.
(3) Any information concerning cause of death that is
available at the time such person died on the aircraft or is
removed from the aircraft or that subsequently becomes known to
the air carrier.
(4) Whether or not the aircraft was diverted as a result of
the death or incident.
(5) Such other information as the Administrator may request
as necessary to aid in a decision as to whether or not to
require automatic external defibrillators in airports or on
aircraft operated by air carriers, or both.
(b) Format.--The Administrator may specify a format for reports to be
submitted under this section.
SEC. 4. DECISION ON AUTOMATIC EXTERNAL DEFIBRILLATORS.
(a) In General.--Not later than 120 days after the last day of the 1-
year period described in section 3, the Administrator of the Federal
Aviation Administration shall make a decision on whether or not to
require automatic external defibrillators on aircraft operated by
passenger air carriers and whether or not to require automatic external
defibrillators at airports.
(b) Form of Decision.--A decision under this section shall be in the
form of a notice of proposed rulemaking requiring automatic external
defibrillators in airports or on aircraft operated by air passenger
carriers, or both, or a recommendation to Congress for legislation
requiring such defibrillators or a notice in the Federal Register that
such defibrillators should not be required in airports or on such
aircraft. If a decision under this section is in the form of a notice
of proposed rulemaking, the Administrator shall make a final decision
not later than the 120th day following the date on which comments are
due on the notice of proposed rulemaking.
(c) Contents.--If the Administrator decides that automatic external
defibrillators should be required--
(1) on aircraft operated by air passenger carriers, the
proposed rulemaking or recommendation shall include--
(A) the size of the aircraft on which such
defibrillators should be required;
(B) the class flights (whether interstate, overseas,
or foreign air transportation or any combination
thereof) on which such defibrillators should be
(C) the training that should be required for air
carrier personnel in the use of such defibrillators;
(D) the associated equipment and medication that
should be required to be carried in the aircraft
medical kit; and
(2) at airports, the proposed rulemaking or recommendation
(A) the size of the airport at which such
defibrillators should be required;
(B) the training that should be required for airport
personnel in the use of such defibrillators; and
(C) the associated equipment and medication that
should be required at the airport.
(d) Limitation.--The Administrator may not require automatic external
defibrillators on helicopters and on aircraft with a maximum payload
capacity (as defined in section 119.3 of title 14, Code of Federal
Regulations) of 7,500 pounds or less.
(e) Special Rule.--If the Administrator decides that automatic
external defibrillators should be required at airports, the proposed
rulemaking or recommendation shall provide that the airports are
responsible for providing the defibrillators.
SEC. 5. LIMITATIONS ON LIABILITY.
(a) Liability of Air Carriers.--An air carrier shall not be liable
for damages in any action brought in a Federal or State court arising
out of the performance of the air carrier in obtaining or attempting to
obtain the assistance of a passenger in an in-flight medical emergency,
or out of the acts or omissions of the passenger rendering the
assistance, if the carrier in good faith believes that the passenger is
a medically qualified individual and not an employee or agent of the
(b) Liability of Individuals.--An individual shall not be liable for
damages in any action brought in a Federal or State court arising out
of the acts or omissions of the individual in providing or attempting
to provide assistance in the case of an in-flight medical emergency
unless the individual, while rendering such assistance, is guilty of
gross negligence or willful misconduct.
SEC. 6. DEFINITIONS.
In this Act--
(1) the terms ``air carrier'', ``aircraft'', ``airport'',
``interstate air transportation'', ``overseas air
transportation'', and ``foreign air transportation'' have the
meanings such terms have under section 40102 of title 49,
United States Code;
(2) the term ``major air carrier'' means an air carrier
certificated under section 41102 of title 49, United States
Code, that accounted for at least 1 percent of domestic
scheduled-passenger revenues in the 12 months ending March 31
of the most recent year preceding the date of the enactment of
this Act, as reported to the Department of Transportation
pursuant to part 241 of title 14 of the Code of Federal
(3) the term ``medically qualified individual'' includes any
person who is licensed, certified, or otherwise qualified to
provide medical care in a State, including a physician, nurse,
physician assistant, paramedic, and emergency medical
Current regulatory status
In 1986, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) first
established regulations requiring air carriers to place medical
kits on board their aircraft. These regulations (51 FR 1223,
January 9, 1986) applied to air carriers carrying passengers
under FAA's rule Part 121 (more than 30 seats) and those
operating aircraft with more than 19 passengers seats under
Prior to this, air carriers were required to have first-aid
kits for treatment of injuries or medical emergencies that
might occur during flight time or in minor accidents. First aid
kits are required to have such items as bandages, antiseptic
swabs, splints, adhesive tape, and scissors. Equipment placed
in medical kits are more comprehensive and include such items
as a stethoscope, blood pressure measuring device, airways,
drugs for allergic reactions, and the basic instruction for use
of the drugs.
Federal Aviation Regulations addressing medical kits were
not amended until October 18, 1994. This amendment required the
addition of disposable latex gloves to the medical kits. On
January 19, 1996, these regulations were further amended to
require commuter aircraft that have passenger configurations of
10 to 30 seats to carry medical kits on board.
Recent studies and actions
In recent years, there has been growing debate outside and
within the aviation industry as to whether or not current
medical kits are adequate. Several foreign air passenger
carriers have extensive medical kits, including defibrillators,
on-board their overseas flights.
American, United, Delta, Alaska Airlines, and American
Trans Air have recently announced that they will place
defibrillators on some flights. The other carriers that carry
these systems include Qantas Airlines from Australia, Virgin
Atlantic from England, and Air Zimbabwe from Africa.
An Automated External Defibrillator (AED) is a device that
when placed on the chest of a person suffering from ventricular
fibrillation can shock that person's heart back into the proper
rhythm. Although they used to be bulky and complex, recent
technology improvements in these defibrillators has made them
portable, compact, and easy to use. This has enabled air
carriers to consider installing them on their aircraft in order
to address cardiac emergencies.
Although there have been a number of short-term data
collections and assumptions from various sources, there does
not appear to be enough historical data on the number and types
of medical emergencies to determine trends that would be
helpful in assessing the scope and extent of in-flight
According to the FAA, at the present time, there is no way
to actually monitor the incidence of in-flight medical
emergencies because airlines are not required to report them.
The FAA receives reports of accidents, incidents, and
diversions; however, the diversion information is only
maintained for a 30-day period. The available data for air
carriers are from multiple sources, are collected and
classified differently and often use different categorizations.
The FAA's Civil Aeromedical Institute issued a report in
February 1997, which noted the difficulties mentioned above,
stating that the in-flight medical emergency rate appeared to
have nearly doubled between 1990 and 1993, the interval covered
by the study.
According to a study of 120 airlines conducted from 1977 to
1984 and published in the Journal of the American Medical
Association in 1988, about 72 deaths occur aboard aircraft each
year. In many years, this is more than the number of deaths
from airline crashes in the U.S. The study states that about
63% of the deaths were due to sudden, unexpected cardiac
problems, and that the most likely victims were middle-age men.
Qantas Airlines placed defibrillators on all of its 53
international route airplanes and throughout Qantas airport
terminals in 1991. From September 1991 to August 1996, the
defibrillators were used on 87 occasions; 47 times for
monitoring an acutely ill passenger, and 40 times for cardiac
arrest; 22 episodes of cardiac arrest occurred on the
airplanes. Qantas aircraft diverted on 17 occasions during this
Most airlines do not keep records of passenger deaths.
However, according to American Airlines, cardiopulmonary
resuscitation is a good indicator as to when a defibrillator
would be necessary.
From 1991 through 1996, American Airlines indicated that
CPR related incidents on board aircraft have almost tripled. In
1991, there were 12 reports of CPR being administered while in
1996 there were 33 cases reported. Moreover, the Chicago
Tribune reported that American Airlines recorded 4,800 in-
flight medical emergencies over the last two years and, in 1994
and 1995, Northwest Airlines made 171 emergency medical
landings and American Airlines made 285.
The most common in-flight medical occurrences for American
Airlines from 1991 through 1996, by percentage, are as follows:
cardiac events.................................................... 40
Crew medical training
Some question the current medical training of flight
attendant personnel as well as the liability concerns of the
airlines and their employees. There are also debates about the
level of medical training flight attendants should receive or
be held responsible for during flights.
Under current Federal Aviation Regulations, crew member
training programs must provide instruction in first-aid
equipment and its proper use and familiarization with the
emergency medical kit.
On May 21, 1997, the Subcommittee held a hearing on Medical
Kits aboard Commercial Aircraft. At that hearing, the new
smaller defibrillator was demonstrated. The Subcommittee was
impressed with its ease of use. However, it was apparent that
there was still a lack of data to determine the extent of
medical problems aboard commercial aircraft. It was also
unclear whether defibrillators could safely be used on all
sizes and types of aircraft. There were indications that there
could be problems if these devices were installed on smaller
aircraft. The Subcommittee was also concerned about the minimal
training airline crews seemed to be receiving in dealing with
It has been reported that cardiac arrest kills an estimated
350,000 to 400,000 Americans each year. To be effective,
defibrillation must usually occur within the first few minutes
of the event. It will usually not be possible to land that
quickly and obtain medical help when the plane is at 20 or 30
thousand feet. And the cost to divert is not inconsequential to
the airline involved.
Therefore, on November 6, 1997, Aviation Subcommittee
Chairman Duncan introduced H.R. 2843, the Aviation Medical
Assistance Act. Congressmen Lipinski, Blunt, Fox, Cooksey, and
Congresswoman Kennelly are cosponsors of this bill. The
American Medical Association (AMA) has announced that it
The bill would require major airlines to report their on-
board medical incidents to the FAA. The FAA would then use the
data to decide whether to require defibrillators aboard
passenger aircraft, and if so, which types of passenger
aircraft. Cargo aircraft are not affected.
There was testimony at the hearing indicating that
defibrillators would only be appropriate for long flights and
only on large aircraft although there was some disagreement
over what exactly would constitute a large enough aircraft. The
reported bill specifies that this equipment cannot be required
on helicopters or aircraft with payload capacity of 7,500
pounds or less (about 30 seats or less). With respect to
aircraft of more than 7,500 pounds, the Committee has chosen to
leave it to the detailed analysis by the FAA as to where to
draw the line.
However, the Committee is aware that there are many
aircraft in regional service with payloads of more than 7,500
pounds. Most have only a single flight attendant. The typical
characteristics of these aircraft are relatively narrow aisles
and limited open floor space at the entry door and in the
service areas. The lack of open floor space could make
positioning of the sick person and the application of the
defibrillator difficult. In addition, most of the regional
aircraft involved have between 32 and 50 passenger seats. At
typical load factors of about 55%, it is less likely that there
will be a medical professional on board. Moreover, most of
these smaller aircraft require less runway to land safely and
are able to divert more quickly into many more airports than
larger jet aircraft in the event of an onboard medical
emergency. The Committee urges the FAA to consider these
factors in deciding where to draw the line.
The time periods in this bill will enable that agency to
consult with aerospace medicine practitioners, other clinical
specialists, airlines, and the public before making its
decision. The Committee does note with approval that some major
U.S. airlines with narrow body aircraft have already chosen to
equip their fleet with the new defibrillators.
The reported bill gives the FAA authority to require
defibrillators at airports. As with airlines, the FAA must
decide the size of the airport at which defibrillators should
be required, the training that should be required of airport
personnel, and the related equipment and medication that should
be required at the airport. The Committee would expect FAA to
take a similar judicious approach in drawing the line with
respect to airports as it does with airlines and not require
them at airports which are too small to justify the expense
such as general aviation airports or small commercial ones that
do not have crash/fire/rescue equipment. If the FAA does
require defibrillators at airports, the reported bill makes
clear that it is the airport owner or operator and not the
airlines operating there that will be responsible for providing
The reported bill would also direct FAA to consider
upgrading the medical equipment on aircraft and improving
flight attendant training. The FAA now requires carriers to
instruct flight attendants in the location, function, and
operation of first aid equipment and first aid oxygen. The
Committee is concerned that FAA rules do not mandate a standard
training program that will ensure that flight attendants can
perform first-aid procedures necessary to effectively deal with
the medical emergencies that occur aboard aircraft. The
Committee expects the FAA, in the reevaluation of flight
attendant training required by this bill, to consider making
changes to address this issue.
Finally, the bill includes a ``Good Samaritan'' provision
to protect those who help in a medical emergency. The provision
protects an individual (such as a passenger, pilot, or flight
attendant) from legal liability for helping in a medical
emergency unless that individual is guilty of gross negligence
or willful misconduct. The provision also protects the airline
from liability for the negligence of a passenger who volunteers
to help in a medical emergency but only if (1) that passenger
is not an employee of the airline and (2) the airline in good
faith believed that that passenger was qualified to provide
that help (such as where the crew believed that the passenger
was a doctor, nurse, or was otherwise experienced in dealing
with medical emergencies).
Nothing in the good Samaritan provision should be construed
to affect the liability of an air carrier with respect to harm
caused to a passenger by that carrier's employee or agent who
provides or attempts to provide assistance during an in-flight
medical emergency. The provision is intended to limit the
liability only of individual passengers and employees, not the
vicarious liability of the airline they may work for. The
airline is not a good Samaritan but rather is a common carrier
that, by law, has a duty to provide safe transportation to
those who have paid for it.
Also, this provision should not affect situations such as
the one that arose in Krys v. Lufthansa German Airlines, 119
F.3d 1515 (11th Cir. 1997). The provision in the reported bill
ensures that airlines will not be held liable for the acts or
omissions of passengers who are not its employees and who they
do not control. However, in Krys, the airline was held liable
there not because of acts or omissions of the passenger
rendering assistance but rather because the airline's employees
failed to divert the flight and land when its own policy as
well as standard industry practice indicated that it should
have done so.
Section 1 is the short title.
Section 2 gives the FAA 1 year to reevaluate its rules
regarding the contents of aircraft medical kits on commercial
aircraft and the training required in the use of that equipment
and, if warranted, to propose changes in those rules.
Section 3 requires major airlines to provide quarterly
reports over a 1-year period to the FAA that include the
The number of people who died on their aircraft.;
The age of that person;
Any available information about the cause of death;
Whether the aircraft was diverted as a result of the
death or incident; and
Such other information as the FAA may require.
This section also permits FAA to specify a format for the
quarterly reports. However, airlines must still file the
reports quarterly with the required information even if FAA has
not specified a format. If FAA chooses to specify a format, the
Committee suggests the following:
Date Flight Passenger ID & age ?Divert Medical/death info
Section 4 requires FAA to make a decision on whether
automatic external defibrillators should be required in
airports and on commercial passenger aircraft. The FAA is given
120 days after receiving the airline quarterly reports to make
the decision on the defibrillators. This decision could take
the form of either the issuance of a notice of proposed rule-
making (NPRM), a recommendation to Congress, or a notice that
no further action should be taken. If FAA takes the NPRM
approach, it would have 120 days after comments are received to
issue a final rule. If FAA decides that defibrillators should
be required, the agency would be expected to decide the size of
the aircraft on which defibrillators should be required, the
type of flights (domestic, international), the training that
should be required of flight attendants, and the related
equipment and medication that should be carried in the aircraft
medical kit. Similar decisions would have to be made with
respect to airports.
Section 5 is the Good Samaritan provision. It protects the
airline against liability for the actions of a passenger
rendering assistance in an in-flight medical emergency if the
passenger is not an employee or agent of the airline and if the
airline in good faith believed that the passenger was qualified
to render such assistance. It also protects an individual (such
as a passenger or member of the crew) from liability for
rendering assistance unless that person engaged in gross
negligence or willful misconduct.
Section 6 defines terms.
HEARINGS AND LEGISLATIVE HISTORY
The Subcommittee on Aviation held a hearing on ``Medical
Kits on Commercial Airlines'' on May 21, 1997 (Committee
document 105-23). H.R. 2843 was introduced on November 6, 1997.
The Committee has not held hearings on the reported
On March 5, 1998, the Subcommittee on Aviation reported the
bill, by unanimous voice vote, to the Committee on
Transportation and Infrastructure. On March 11, 1998 the
Committee met in open session and ordered the bill reported,
with an amendment, by voice vote with a quorum present. There
were no recorded votes taken during Committee consideration of
Clause 2(l)(2)(B) of rule XI requires each committee report
to include the total number of votes cast for and against on
each rollcall vote on a motion to report and on any amendment
offered to the measure, and the names of those members voting
for and against. There were no recorded votes taken in
connection with ordering H.R. 2843 reported. A motion by Mr.
Duncan to order H.R. 2843 reported to the House was agreed to
by voice vote, a quorum being present.
COMMITTEE OVERSIGHT FINDINGS
With respect to the requirements of clause 2(l)(3)(A) of
rule XI of the Rules of House of Representatives, the
Committee's oversight findings and recommendations are
reflected in this report.
COSTS OF THE LEGISLATION
Clause 7 of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of
Representatives does not apply where a cost estimate and
comparison prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget
Office under section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act of
1974 has been timely submitted prior to the filing of the
report and is included in the report. Such a cost estimate is
included in this report.
COMPLIANCE WITH HOUSE RULE XI
1. With respect to the requirement of clause 2(l)(3)(B) of
rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives, and
section 308(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the
Committee references the report of the Congressional Budget
Office included below.
2. With respect to the requirement of clause 2(l)(3)(D) of
rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the
Committee has received no report of oversight findings and
recommendations from the Committee on Government Reform and
Oversight on the subject of H.R. 2843.
3. With respect to the requirement of clause 2(l)(3)(C) of
rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives and
section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the
Committee has received the following cost estimate for H.R.
2843 from the Director of the Congressional Budget Office.
Congressional Budget Office,
Washington, DC, March 18, 1998.
Hon. Bud Shuster,
Chairman, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, House of
Representatives, Washington, DC.
Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 2843, the Aviation
Medical Assistance Act of 1998.
If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contacts for this
estimate are Victoria V. Heid (for federal costs), Pepper
Santalucia (for the state and local impact), and Jean Wooster
(for the private-sector impact).
June E. O'Neill, Director.
congressional budget office cost estimate
H.R. 2843--Aviation Medical Assistant Act of 1998
Summary: H.R. 2843 would direct the Administrator of the
Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to reevaluate regulations
regarding equipment in medical kits carried on certain aircraft
and the training required of flight attendants in the use of
such equipment. Specifically, the bill would direct the FAA to
consider whether automatic external defibrillators should be
required. H.R. 2843 also would direct the FAA to evaluate
whether the agency should require such equipment in airports.
The bill would require the FAA to announce its decisions within
19 months of enactment.
In addition, the bill would direct major air carriers to
provide information to the FAA about medical incidents
occurring on aircraft for the purpose of assisting the FAA in
reevaluating the current regulations. The bill also would limit
the liability of air carriers and individuals when assisting
passengers in an in-flight medical emergency.
CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 2843 would have no
significant impact on the federal budget. Because H.R. 2843
would not affect direct spending or receipts, pay-as-you-go
procedures would not apply.
H.R. 2843 contains both intergovernmental and private-
sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act
of 1995 (UMRA), but the expected costs of complying with those
mandates would be well below the statutory thresholds
established in UMRA.
Estimated cost to the Federal Government: Under current
law, the FAA has the authority to regulate the medical
equipment carried on aircraft; however, the agency does not
have the authority to regulate medical equipment at airports,
and it is unclear whether enacting H.R. 2843 would give the FAA
authority to do so. CBO estimates that the FAA would incur no
significant costs to reevaluate medical equipment required on
aircraft. Assuming that enacting H.R. 2843 would give the FAA
authority to regulate medical equipment at airports, CBO
estimates that additional discretionary outlays for the FAA to
study and review whether such regulations should be proposed
would total less than $250,000, assuming appropriation of the
Estimated impact on State, local, and tribal governments:
The bill contains at least one intergovernmental mandate as
defined in UMRA. By limiting the liability of air carriers and
individuals who provide medical assistance during an in-flight
emergency, the bill would preempt the liability laws of state
and local governments. CBO estimates that this preemption would
not impose any significant costs on state or local governments.
The bill would also direct the FAA to consider whether
automatic external defibrillators should be required at
airports, most of which are publicly owned. If imposed, such a
requirement would be an intergovernmental mandate. Based on
information from airports and the FAA, CBO estimates that the
direct costs of such a requirement would be well below the
statutory threshold for intergovernmental mandates ($50 million
in 1996, adjusted annually for inflation).
Estimated impact on the private sector: H.R. 2843 would
impose a new private-sector mandate, as defined by UMRA, on
major domestic air carriers. The bill would require
approximately 10 air carriers to make a good faith effort to
obtain information on their onboard medical incidents and to
submit a quarterly report for a one-year period to the FAA. CBO
estimates that the direct cost of complying with this mandate
would fall well below the statutory threshold for private-
sector mandates ($100 million in 1996, adjusted annually for
The bill would also direct the FAA to consider whether
automatic external defibrillators should be required on
aircraft and at airports, but this would not be a new private-
sector mandate. The FAA Currently has the authority to require
medical equipment on aircraft, and CBO expects that no private
airports would be affected by such a requirement.
Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: Victoria V. Heid.
Impact on State, Local, and Tribal Governments; Pepper
Santalucia. Impact on the Private Sector: Jean Wooster.
Estimate approved by: Robert A. Sunshine, Deputy Assistant
Director for Budget Analysis.
applicability to the legislative branch
The Committee finds that the legislation does not relate to
the terms and conditions of employment or access to public
services or accommodations within the meaning of section
102(b)(3) of the Congressional Accountability Act (Public Law
federal mandates statement
The Committee adopts as its own the estimate of the Federal
mandates prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget
Office pursuant to section 423 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform
Act (Public Law 104-4).
constitutional authority statement
Pursuant to clause (2)(l)(4) of rule XI of the Rules of the
House of Representatives, committee reports on a bill or joint
resolution of a public character shall include a statement
citing the specific powers granted to the Congress in the
Constitution to enact the measure. The Committee on
Transportation and Infrastructure finds that Congress has the
authority to enact this measure pursuant to its powers granted
under Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution.
advisory committee statement
No advisory committees within the meaning of section 5(b)
of the Federal Advisory Committee Act were created by this
changes in existing law made by the bill, as reported
H.R. 2843 does not amend any existing Federal statute.
exchange of letters
House of Representatives,
Committee on the Judiciary,
Washington, DC, March 20, 1998.
Hon. Bud Shuster,
Chairman, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, House of
Representatives, Washington, DC.
Dear Bud: I am writing to you regarding the ``Aviation
Medical Assistance Act of 1997'' (H.R. 2843), legislation that
was ordered reported by the Committee on Transportation and
Infrastructure on March 11, 1998.
Section 5 imposes limitations on the liability of air
carriers and individuals for injuries caused in the course of
providing in-flight medical emergency services. This provision
falls within the Rule X jurisdiction of the Committee on the
The Judiciary Committee does not object to the terms of
this provision, and for this reason, I am not requesting a
sequential referral of the bill. However, this should not be
deemed to be a waiver of this Committee's jurisdiction over the
subject matters contained therein, or our right to be appointed
as conferees should this bill go to conference with the Senate.
Henry J. Hyde, Chairman.
House of Representatives,
Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure,
Washington, DC, March 20, 1998.
Hon. Henry J. Hyde,
Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary, Rayburn House Office Building,
Dear Henry: Thank you for your letter of March 20, 1998
concerning the Aviation Medical Assistance Act of 1997, H.R.
2843. I appreciate your assistance in expediting House
consideration of this legislation and your comments on section
5 of the bill which limits the liability of air carriers and
individuals for injuries resulting from in-flight medical
emergency services. As you correctly point out, this provision
falls within the jurisdiction of the Committee on the
As you have requested, it is my intention to insert your
letter and this response in the report accompanying H.R. 2843.
Further, I would be pleased to support the representation of
your Committee in any Conference on H.R. 2843 on matters within
the jurisdiction of the Committee on the Judiciary.
With warm personal regards, I am
Bud Shuster, Chairman.