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Man Turned Away From British Airways Flight Dies After Missing Blood Transfusion

Poppy Bilderbeck

Published 
| Last updated 

Man Turned Away From British Airways Flight Dies After Missing Blood Transfusion

A man has died just days after British Airways refused to let him board the plane which was set to transport him to get a blood transfusion.

Chaz Carl Powell had sickle cell anaemia, an inherited health condition prevalent in those of African and Caribbean backgrounds. It can cause painful episodes called sickle cell crises, tiredness, shortness of breath and can also increase a patient's risk of infection.

The 41-year-old was set to receive his regular blood transfusion in London - which he gets every six weeks - however, British Airways prevented him from boarding his flight from Montego Bay, Jamaica on 9 March after he had been visiting his girlfriend, Monique Allen.

Chaz was left unable to fly because British Airways told him that his passport couldn't be deemed a valid travel document because of how damaged the photograph page was, which is pictured above.

The 41-year-old subsequently applied for emergency travel documents. However, while waiting for the British Consulate to get back to him, Chaz developed severe jaundice - a condition in which the skin, whites of the eyes and mucous membranes turn yellow.

Chaz also suffered from jaundice as a side affect of his condition. Credit: MyLondon/BPM
Chaz also suffered from jaundice as a side affect of his condition. Credit: MyLondon/BPM

He also complained 'of severe stomach aches' and was 'struggling to eat,' according to his girlfriend.

Monique took Chaz to the hospital, but after doctors were unable to resuscitate him, he sadly passed away on 12 March. His passing was ruled as a 'sudden death' by police.

Chaz's mother, Sandra Powell, an officer for Southwark Council, believes her son's death was spurred on by the debacle he faced dealing with his passport - stress having been reported as worsening the symptoms of sickle cell anaemia.

However, the results of the post mortem have not yet been released.

Chaz's mum suggested that her son may have looked different to his passport photograph due to Chaz having 'put on weight' and 'grown dreadlocks'. She stated the passport was only 'slightly damaged'

Sandra Powell believes her son's death was spurred on by the debacle he faced dealing with his passport. Credit: MyLondon/BPM
Sandra Powell believes her son's death was spurred on by the debacle he faced dealing with his passport. Credit: MyLondon/BPM

Sandra said: "I can't talk about it, I do not even want to think about it. That should never have happened, they had no right to take control of my son's life.'

A spokesperson for British Airways told LADbible: "We're saddened to hear that one of our customers has passed away and our thoughts are with his friends and family at this difficult time.

"Airlines are required by law to ensure that all documents presented for travel are valid. While our airport team did what they could to help Mr Powell, unfortunately, the photo page of his passport was so badly damaged it could no longer be regarded as a valid travel document."

If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677

Featured Image Credit: MyLondon/BPM/Alamy

Topics: british airways

Poppy Bilderbeck
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