(Adds comments from Garneau)
OTTAWA, May 16 (Reuters) - The Canadian government on Tuesday said it planned to adopt regulations strengthening the rights of air passengers, which would cover cases of denied boarding, lost or damaged baggage and delays on the tarmac over a certain period of time.
Transport Minister Marc Garneau said the independent Canadian Transportation Agency would be responsible for drawing up the new regulations. He also confirmed plans announced last November to relax international ownership restrictions on Canadian air carriers.
The new regulations would create minimum compensation standards for passengers and oblige air service providers like carriers to report performance data.
The new rules, he said, would ensure the traveling public is "treated like passengers and not numbers," he told reporters.
The Canadian regulations were expected since 2016, before an April incident on an United Airlines flight, where a passenger was battered and physically dragged off the plane down the aisle.
A video of the incident quickly went viral on social media of the 69-year-old passenger being dragged from the flight at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport after he refused to give up his seat to make room for crew members, sparking a public backlash against airline overbooking practices.
Garneau said no one who has bought a ticket for a flight could be removed from an aircraft in Canada because of overbooking.
"Such incidents will not be tolerated in Canada," Garneau said. "This is non-negotiable."
In April, Air Canada apologized and offered compensation for bumping a 10-year-old off a flight, prompting his parents to make alternative travel arrangements for the family of four.
In the United States, lawmakers threatened United and other carriers earlier this month with legislation aimed at improving customer service, but lawmakers did not outline any immediate plans for increased oversight of the sector. (Reporting by Leah Schnurr, editing by G Crosse)