Thursday, September 23, 2004

'Ample' flier sues airline for saying he needed 2 seats

'Ample' flier sues airline for saying he needed 2 seats

Henry K. Lee, Chronicle Staff Writer
Thursday, September 23, 2004
San Francisco Chronicle
Chronicle Sections

An Oakland man who describes himself as being of "ample proportion" is suing Southwest Airlines, accusing the carrier of humiliating him by asking him to buy a second seat.

Lionel Bea, 40, said in a lawsuit filed in Alameda County Superior Court that a Southwest employee asked him whether he could fit in one seat before boarding a flight from Oakland to Los Angeles on Sept. 28. When Bea, a Southwest frequent flier, said, "Yes, is there a problem?" the employee said he would have to sell him another seat because of company policy "regarding passengers too large to fit in one seat," according to the lawsuit filed earlier this month.

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