Africa

SA Paralympian Tyrone Pillay fury at airline over prosthesis

Bronze medallist Tyrone Pillay Image copyright AFP
Image caption Tyrone Pillay received a bronze medal at the men's shot put final in Rio

A South African Paralympic shot-putter has hit out at South African Airways for refusing to allow him to board with his prosthetic leg.

Bronze medallist Tyrone Pillay says he was prevented from boarding an internal flight from Johannesburg to Durban as he made his way back from Brazil.

On Twitter, the athlete called the airline "disrespectful".

South African Airways says he should have been allowed on board with the prosthesis and is investigating.

"Our policy makes provision for passenger assistive devices to be carried into the cabin," said airline spokesperson Tlali Tlali.

"Mr Pillay's prosthetic legs fall under this classification and should have been allowed."

Image copyright @pillaytyrone
Image copyright @pillaytyrone

He said Mr Pillay was unable to keep the prosthetic leg with him in the plane's cabin, but it was unclear what had happened to it.

"We have offered an inconsistent service. He was allowed to board our flight from Sao Paulo to Johannesburg, so we want to establish from the staff member here exactly what happened," he added.

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