Senator Seeks Clarification Of Carry-On Rules After Deer Tick Frontman Is Denied Aboard Plane

Deer Tick frontman John McCauley ran into some airport troubles last week after he tried to catch a flight to the Newport Folk Festival. While trying to board a plane from Philadelphia to Rhode Island, U.S. Airways refused to let him or his wife, Vanessa Carlton, on board with his guitar. McCauley tweeted about the incident and had to take an Amtrak train to get to the festival instead. The airline responded by refunding the ticket and giving the couple a voucher for the cost of the train. Everything turned out OK, but because of the incident, U.S. Senator Jack Reed issued a statement on Friday that urged the Department Of Transportation to start enforcing a 2012 law that would allow musical instruments to be carry-on items if they can fit in the cabin. Reed cited Deer Tick’s incident and called for clearer rules to be put in place, noting that this was not the first time that this sort of thing had happened.

[Photo by Mike Lawrie/Getty.]

Comments (3)
  1. can’t help but think that nobody would fly any more if we had bullet trains that didn’t stop in 200 podunk towns from one big city to the next (Amtrak: taking you 12hrs to go 400 miles or less!).

    It’s a tossup with musicians. Check the instrument, watch it get destroyed. Don’t check the instrument, don’t get to fly because airlines hate their customers and their belongings or worse the thing they use as their job. Ugh.

    • It’s been talked about for decades. It hasn’t been done because it’s not feasible. The NE is the only profitable place to have a high speed rail.

  2. In most of the smaller aircraft (which was probably being used for a PHL-Rhode Island flight, and some of the larger, a guitar will not fit in the overhead or under the seat, which is a requirement under the FAA regulations. And note that it says that there must be room in the plane when boarding so the person carrying the guitar is boarding close to the beginning of the boarding process, there probably wouldn’t be room in the overheads even if it would fit.

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