A sixty-nine-year old man who boarded a flight from Chicago O’Hare airport to Louisville on Sunday evening was forcibly removed from the plane when no volunteers would give up their seats for four United crew members. He was bloodied and apparently knocked unconscious as he was attacked and removed. Now, we are learning the reason behind him needing to stay on board was that he was a doctor and needed to see his patients the following morning.
Take a look at the initial video.
Audra D. Bridges, a passenger on the flight, told the Courier-Journal what happened:
Passengers were told at the gate that the flight was overbooked and United, offering $400 and a hotel stay, was looking for one volunteer to take another flight to Louisville at 3 p.m. Monday. Passengers were allowed to board the flight, Bridges said, and once the flight was filled those on the plane were told that four people needed to give up their seats to stand-by United employees that needed to be in Louisville on Monday for a flight. Passengers were told that the flight would not take off until the United crew had seats, Bridges said, and the offer was increased to $800, but no one volunteered.
Then, she said, a manager came aboard the plane and said a computer would select four people to be taken off the flight. One couple was selected first and left the airplane, she said, before the man in the video was confronted.
Three security personnel went to his seat and began to pull him from his seat, smashing his face into the armrest and then he was dragged down the aisle of the plane in front of horrified and outraged passengers.
@United overbook #flight3411 and decided to force random passengers off the plane. Here’s how they did it: pic.twitter.com/QfefM8X2cW
— Jayse D. Anspach (@JayseDavid) April 10, 2017
Yahoo News reports:
The man — who reportedly said he was a doctor and needed to get back to see patients in the morning — was forcibly removed after United overbooked a Sunday evening flight from Chicago to Louisville. According to passengers, United boarded the plane, and after no one accepted its offer to voluntarily give up their seats for four crew members, the airline said a computer would randomly select people. The man refused to leave, which led to security personnel dragging him from his seat.
Newly released video from passengers on board show the man repeating, “I want to go home.”
#flythefriendlyskies my husband was on that flight. Screw you United!! @united pic.twitter.com/4EcxrMy5jZ
— Kaylyn Davis (@kaylyn_davis) April 10, 2017
The video at Yahoo News also shows him repeating, “Just kill me” or “They’ll kill me.”
The plane had to be deboarded in order to clean up the man’s blood.
They had to deboard to clean up his blood. pic.twitter.com/Hfs1DtqILv
— Kaylyn Davis (@kaylyn_davis) April 10, 2017
“The incident on United flight 3411 was not in accordance with our standard operating procedure and the actions of the aviation security officer are obviously not condoned by the Department,” said a spokesperson for the Chicago Department of Aviation in a statement to Yahoo News. “That officer has been placed on leave effective today pending a thorough review of the situation.”
“This is an upsetting event to all of us here at United,” said United CEO Oscar Munoz in a statement Monday. “I apologize for having to re-accommodate these customers. Our team is moving with a sense of urgency to work with the authorities and conduct our own detailed review of what happened. We are also reaching out to this passenger to talk directly with him to address and resolve this situation.”
The Chicago Police Department issued a statement.
Seriously, this was uncalled for. United should have just let passengers continue to their destination since this was a problem for the airline, and then sorted things out properly.
Class act there United! I’m sure the airline will be facing a major lawsuit after this little incident. They would have come out cheaper by booking their crew members on another flight or another airline.
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