The FAA has a test called RTCA/DO160D that if a portable medical device passes this test it is allowed on aircraft. I have provided this in writing from the FAA to Continental as well as the documentation that says the suction machine has passed this test. Now, the FAA rules say that ventilators, CPAP, oxygen concentrators and, respirators should have a label on them - but as long as the manufacturer has had the machine tested and it passed the FAA encourages airlines to allow it on even without the label. If you know anything about these machines you will know that the suction machine is none of these listed four. Any other medical device does not need the label according to the FAA. So it seems they are in violation by requiring it.
Continental is insisting that the suction machine has a label. I have been working with The Aviation Consumer Protection Department and they have their lawyers working with the FAA about our case in specific. So today I called DeVILLBISS - the manufacturer of the suction machine. They are totally amazed that Continental is requiring this. But they know what label I am talking about and are sending me the label tomorrow with a letter stating it is FAA approved. They are also contacting Continental for me with the approval letters.
PLEASE PRAY Continental will accept this. They said this is the only thing they need, so please please please pray we can fly with them since it is cheaper. We would need to carry the 75 lbs of batteries, but at least it would save us $2,000. I want this nightmare to be over so bad!
It is so scary to be taking my medically fragile son on a 13 hour flight to the other side of the world, I haven't even had time to pack or get excited because I have been under so much stress from trying to deal with Continental. I am so tired of them telling me they don't believe me, that I should have "known" what they do and don't do with on board oxygen, I am tired of being told I should have found the answers on the website myself instead of calling and talking to their employees, of having an executive director tell me he won't give me his word that he will try to get this worked out so future costumers with disabilities won't have to deal with this.
I just want to be able to fly on the cheapest airline dispite the fact that Dillon has medical needs. The reason I have been spending so much energy to fight Continental is becuase YOU ALL have paid our tickets and it would be so unfair of me to ask you to help me raise $2,000 more without doing everything I possibly can. I know many of you have sacrificed in your donations, kids have even given me their money from their piggy banks to help Dillon get to China. I can't in good faith abuse your generosity especially in these hard economic times. Please pray this works out, if not I am not sure we will have a choice but to go with United and spend the $2,000. United people seem to be much more poliet, but it is still the extra money that could be spent on giving Dillon the injections directly into the brain instead of on airline tickets!
I don't know why God has allowed this to happen, but if this all gets worked out it will be all to the Glory of God. The devil is doing everything he can to discourage us, to worry us, to cause stress. But God is in control of even this and I am sure He has a purpose - even if I don't know what exactly it is right now.