Monthly Archives: January 2015

Year in Review: Thibodeau v. Air Canada – The Exclusivity of the Montreal Convention

Michel and Lynda Thibodeau (the “Thibodeaus”) launched several complaints before Canada’s Commissioner of Official Languages (the “Commissioner”) alleging that Air Canada had contravened its obligations under the Official Languages Act (“OLA”) to provide services in French. They alleged that on two trips they made in 2009, Air Canada had failed to offer services in French at check-in counters, boarding gates and aboard flights on which there was significant demand for services in French, and that it made passenger announcements only in English.

The Commissioner found that all but two of the complaints had merit. The matter then proceeded before the Federal Court of Canada, which awarded $6,000 in damages to each of the Thibodeaus, representing $1,500 per violation. The Federal …

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New Exemptions for Commercial UAV Operators

Transport Canada recently introduced two new exemptions to simplify commercial unmanned air vehicle (UAV) operations and safely integrate them into Canadian airspace.

UAV operations are regulated by Transport Canada under the Canadian Aviation Regulations (CARs) and the Aeronautics Act.  The CARs define a UAV as a “power-driven aircraft, other than a model aircraft, that is designed to fly without a human operator on board”.  “Model aircraft” under the CARs is defined as only those unmanned aircraft weighing less than 35 kg and being used for recreational purposes.

Previously, all UAVs, as defined under CARs, required a Special Flight Operations Certificate (SFOC) for their operation, under Section 602.41 of CARs.  A SFOC authorizes the operation of a UAV for a …

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