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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR Data is current as of August 26, 2014

Title 49Subtitle APart 39 → Subpart F


Title 49: Transportation
PART 39—TRANSPORTATION FOR INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES: PASSENGER VESSELS


Subpart F—Assistance and Services to Passengers With Disabilities


Contents
§39.81   What assistance must PVOs provide to passengers with a disability in getting to and from a passenger vessel?
§39.83   What are PVOs' obligations for assisting passengers with a disability in getting on and off a passenger vessel?
§39.85   What services must PVOs provide to passengers with a disability on board a passenger vessel?
§39.87   What services are PVOs not required to provide to passengers with a disability on board a passenger vessel?
§39.89   What requirements apply to on-board safety briefings, information, and drills?
§39.91   Must PVOs permit passengers with a disability to travel with service animals?
§39.93   What wheelchairs and other assistive devices may passengers with a disability bring onto a passenger vessel?
§39.95   May PVOs limit their liability for loss of or damage to wheelchairs or other assistive devices?

§39.81   What assistance must PVOs provide to passengers with a disability in getting to and from a passenger vessel?

(a) As a PVO, if you provide, contract for, or otherwise arrange for transportation to and from a passenger vessel in the U.S. (e.g., a bus transfer from an airport to a vessel terminal), you must ensure that the transfer service is accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities, as required by this Part.

(b) You must also provide assistance requested by or on behalf of a passenger with a disability in moving between the terminal entrance (or a vehicle drop-off point adjacent to the entrance) of a terminal in the U.S. and the place where people get on or off the passenger vessel. This requirement includes assistance in accessing key functional areas of the terminal, such as ticket counters and baggage checking/claim. It also includes a brief stop upon request at an accessible toilet room.

§39.83   What are PVOs' obligations for assisting passengers with a disability in getting on and off a passenger vessel?

(a) If a passenger with a disability can readily get on or off a passenger vessel without assistance, you are not required to provide such assistance to the passenger. You must not require such a passenger with a disability to accept assistance from you in getting on or off the vessel unless it is provided to all passengers as a matter of course.

(b) With respect to a passenger with a disability who is not able to get on or off a passenger vessel without assistance, you must promptly provide assistance that ensures that the passenger can get on or off the vessel.

(c) When you have to provide assistance to a passenger with a disability in getting on or off a passenger vessel, you may use any available means to which the passenger consents (e.g., lifts, ramps, boarding chairs, assistance by vessel personnel).

§39.85   What services must PVOs provide to passengers with a disability on board a passenger vessel?

As a PVO, you must provide services on board the vessel as requested by or on behalf of passengers with a disability, or when offered by PVO personnel and accepted by passengers with a disability, as follows:

(a) Assistance in moving about the vessel, with respect to any physical barriers rendering an area not readily accessible and usable to the passenger.

(b) If food is provided to passengers on the vessel, assistance in preparation for eating, such as opening packages and identifying food;

(c) Effective communication with passengers who have vision impairments or who are deaf or hard-of-hearing, so that these passengers have timely access to information the PVO provides to other passengers (e.g., weather, on-board services, delays).

§39.87   What services are PVOs not required to provide to passengers with a disability on board a passenger vessel?

As a PVO, you are not required to provide extensive special assistance to passengers with a disability. For purposes of this section, extensive special assistance includes the following activities:

(a) Assistance in actual eating;

(b) Assistance within a toilet room or assistance elsewhere on the vessel with elimination functions; and

(c) Provision of medical equipment or services, or personal devices, except to the extent provided to all passengers.

§39.89   What requirements apply to on-board safety briefings, information, and drills?

As a PVO, you must comply with the following requirements with respect to safety briefings, information, or drills provided to passengers:

(a) You must provide the briefings or other safety-related information through means that effectively communicate their content to persons with vision or hearing impairments, using auxiliary aids and services where necessary for effective communication. This includes providing written materials in alternative formats that persons with vision impairments can use.

(b) You must not require any passenger with a disability to demonstrate that he or she has listened to, read, or understood the information presented, except to the extent that you impose such a requirement on all passengers. You must not take any action adverse to a qualified individual with a disability on the basis that the person has not “accepted” the briefing.

(c) As a PVO, if you present on-board safety briefings to passengers on video screens, you must ensure that the safety-video presentation is accessible to passengers with impaired hearing (e.g., through use of captioning or placement of a sign language interpreter in the video).

(d) You must provide whatever assistance is necessary to enable passengers with disabilities to participate fully in safety or emergency evacuation drills provided to all passengers.

(e) You must maintain evacuation programs, information, and equipment in locations that passengers can readily access and use.

§39.91   Must PVOs permit passengers with a disability to travel with service animals?

(a) As a PVO, you must permit service animals to accompany passengers with a disability.

(b) You must permit the service animal to accompany the passenger in all locations that passengers can use on a vessel, including in lifeboats.

(c) You must permit the passenger accompanied by the service animal to bring aboard a reasonable quantity of food for the animal aboard the vessel at no additional charge. If your vessel provides overnight accommodations, you must also provide reasonable refrigeration space for the service animal food.

(d) You must accept the following as evidence that an animal is a service animal: Identification cards, other written documentation, presence of harnesses, tags, and/or the credible verbal assurances of a passenger with a disability using the animal.

(e) If the legal requirements of a foreign government (e.g., quarantine regulations) do not permit a service animal to disembark at a foreign port, as a PVO you may require the animal to remain on board while its user leaves the vessel. You must work with the animal's user to ensure that the animal is properly cared for during the user's absence.

§39.93   What wheelchairs and other assistive devices may passengers with a disability bring onto a passenger vessel?

(a) As a PVO subject to Title III of the ADA, you must permit individuals with mobility disabilities to use wheelchairs and manually powered mobility aids, such as walkers, crutches, canes, braces, or other similar devices designed for use by individuals with mobility disabilities in any areas open to pedestrian use.

(b)(1) As A PVO subject to Title III of the ADA, you must make reasonable modifications in your policies, practices, or procedures to permit the use of other power-driven mobility devices by individuals with mobility disabilities, unless you can demonstrate that a device cannot be operated on board the vessel consistent with legitimate safety requirements you have established for the vessel.

(2) In determining whether a particular other power-driven mobility device can be allowed on a specific vessel as a reasonable modification under paragraph (b)(1) of this section, the PVO must consider:

(i) The type, size, weight, dimensions, and speed of the device;

(ii) The vessel's volume of pedestrian traffic (which may vary at different times of the day, week, month, or year);

(iii) The vessel's design and operational characteristics (e.g., the size and balance requirements of the vessel, the density and placement of stationary devices, and the availability of storage for the device, if requested by the user);

(iv) Whether legitimate safety requirements can be established to permit the safe operation of a device in the specific vessel; and

(c)(1) As a PVO subject to Title III of the ADA, you must not ask an individual using a wheelchair or other power-driven mobility device questions about the nature and extent of the individual's disability.

(2) You may ask a person using an other power-driven mobility device to provide a credible assurance that the mobility device is required because of the person's disability. In response to this inquiry, you must accept the presentation of a valid, State-issued disability parking placard or card, or State-issued proof of disability as a credible assurance that the use of the other power-driven mobility device is for the individual's mobility disability. In lieu of a valid, State-issued disability parking placard or card, or State-issued proof of disability, a PVO shall accept as a credible assurance a verbal representation not contradicted by observable fact, that the other power-driven mobility device is being used for a mobility disability.

(d) As a PVO subject to Title II of the ADA, you must follow the requirements of paragraphs (a) through (c) of this section. In addition, any restriction you impose on the use of an other powered mobility device on your vessel must be limited to the minimum necessary to meet a legitimate safety requirement. For example, if a device can be accommodated in some spaces of the vessel but not others because of a legitimate safety requirement, you could not completely exclude the device from the vessel.

(e) As a PVO, you are not required to permit passengers with a disability to bring wheelchairs or other powered mobility devices into lifeboats or other survival craft, in the context of an emergency evacuation of the vessel.

§39.95   May PVOs limit their liability for loss of or damage to wheelchairs or other assistive devices?

Consistent with any applicable requirements of international law, you must not apply any liability limits with respect to loss of or damage to wheeled mobility assistive devices or other assistive devices. The criterion for calculating the compensation for a lost, damaged, or destroyed wheelchair or other assistive device is the original purchase price of the device.



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