NOT OVERBOOKED? United Airlines: Controversial Flight NOT Overbooked; PR Genius UA CEO Apologizes AgainPosted: April 11, 2017
“I continue to be disturbed by what happened on this flight, and I deeply apologize to the customer forcibly removed and to all the customers aboard,” CEO Oscar Munoz said in a statement. “No one should ever be mistreated this way.”
Video of a man being dragged out of his seat on a United Airlines flight has sparked social media uproar. The airline insisted the flight was over-booked and that it had no choice but to contact authorities when the man refused to leave. (April 10) AP
United has been under siege since videos of Sunday night’s violent confrontation on the plane at Chicago’s O’Hare Airport went viral, drawing hundreds of millions of views around the world. Social media outrage rained down on the Chicago-based airline, prompting a public apology Monday from Munoz.
United spokesman Jonathan Guerin said Tuesday that all 70 seats on United Express Flight 3411 were filled, but the plane was not overbooked as the airline previously reported. Instead, United and regional affiliate Republic Airlines, which operated the flight, selected four passengers at random to be removed to accommodate crew members needed in Louisville the next day.
Three passengers went quietly. The fourth, who was literally pulled out of his seat and off the plane, was David Dao, a physician in Elizabethtown, Ky.
Munoz issued a public apology Monday, but hours later sent a letter to the airline’s employees lauding the behavior of the flight crew in dealing with a “disruptive and belligerent” passenger. Munoz credited employees with following established procedures on the Louisville-bound flight.
“This situation was unfortunately compounded when one of the passengers we politely asked to deplane refused, and it became necessary to contact Chicago Aviation Security Officers to help,” the letter says. “While I deeply regret this situation arose, I also emphatically stand behind all of you, and I want to commend you for continuing to go above and beyond to ensure we fly right.”
Munoz conceded, however, that “there are lessons we can learn from this experience,” and he promised an investigation … (read more)