Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 13th 2017 Contents B14 life
guardian.co.tt Thursday, April 13, 2017
Minutes after a passenger recorded a video
showing security officers dragging a man off
an overbooked United Express flight at O’Hare
Airport, a smaller snippet of video showed an-
other troubling scene.
There stood the passenger who had been dragged
on his back to the front of the plane, appearing dazed
as he spoke through bloody lips and blood that had
spilled onto his chin.
“I want to go home, I want to go home,” he said.
The treatment of the passenger on Sunday night
drew outrage and scorn on social media and anger
among some of the passengers on the flight as the
unidentified man was thrown off the plane. The vid-
eo seen around the world could prompt a backlash
against United from passengers as the busy summer
travel season begins.
And for Chicago, it is another public-relations
nightmare, adding to its reputation as a city unable
to curb a crime wave in some neighbourhoods.
The furore grew from a common air travel issue — an
overbooked flight. United was trying to make room
for four employees of a partner airline, meaning four
people had to get off the flight to Louisville.
At first, the airline asked for volunteers, offering
US$400 and then when that didn’t work, US$800 per
passenger to relinquish a seat. When no one volun-
tarily came forward, United selected four passengers
Three got off the flight, but the fourth, a man who
said he was a doctor and needed to get home to treat
patients on Monday, refused.
Three men, identified later as Chicago Aviation
Department security officers, got on the plane. Two
officers tried to reason with the man before a third
came aboard and pointed at the man “basically saying,
‘Sir, you have to get off the plane,’” said Tyler Bridges,
a passenger whose wife, Audra D Bridges, posted a
video on Facebook.
One of the security officers could be seen grabbing
the screaming man from his window seat, across the
armrest and dragging him down the aisle by his arms.
Other passengers on Flight 3411 are heard saying,
“Please, my God,” “What are you doing?” “This is
wrong,” “Look at what you did to him” and “Busted
“We almost felt like we were being taken hostage,”
said Tyler Bridges. “We were stuck there. You can’t do
anything as a traveller. You’re relying on the airline.”
United Airlines’ parent company CEO Oscar Munoz
issued a letter late Monday defending his employ-
ees, saying the passenger was being “disruptive and
While Munoz said he was “upset” to see and hear
what happened, “our employees followed established
procedures for dealing with situations like this.”
Chicago’s Aviation Department said the security
officer who grabbed the passenger had been placed
“The incidence 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,’ the
agency said in a statement.
After a three-hour delay, United Express Flight
3411 took off without the man aboard.
Airlines are allowed to sell more tickets than seats
on the plane. They routinely overbook flights because
some people do not show up.
It’s not unusual for airlines to offer travel vouchers
to encourage people to give up their seats, and there
are no rules for the process. When an airline demands
that a passenger give up a seat, the airline is required
to pay double the passenger’s one-way fare, up to
US$675 provided the passenger is put on a flight that
arrives within one to two hours of the original. The
compensation rises to four times the ticket price, up
to US$1,350, for longer delays.
When they bump passengers, airlines are required
to give those passengers a written description of their
Last year, United forced 3,765 people off oversold
flights and another 62,895 United passengers volun-
teered to give up their seats, probably in exchange for
travel vouchers. That’s out of more than 86 million
people who boarded a United flight in 2016, according
to government figures. United ranks in the middle of
US carriers when it comes to bumping passengers.
ExpressJet, which operates flights under the United
Express, American Eagle and Delta Connection names,
had the highest rate of bumping passengers last year.
Among the largest carriers, Southwest Airlines had
the highest rate, followed by JetBlue Airways. (AP)
A United Airlines passenger
plane lands at Newark Liberty
International Airport in Newark,
New Jersey. AP PHOTO
Video could invite summer
travel boycott against United
SHELL INTERNSHIP PROGRAM 2017
IN SEARCH OF REMARKABLE STUDENTS
Shell is looking for remarkable students to join our innovative team and become
a part of our dynamic and diverse work environment.
True curiosity is an extraordinary quality.
After all, how many people are really prepared to ask the difficult questions or
challenge the status quo?
At Shell, weʼre in search of outstanding people.
The ones who are eager to explore new frontiers.
The pioneers and the game-changers.
The ones who always go further in search of solutions.
Areas of study: Business Administration, Economics, Engineering (Civil, Electrical and
Mechanical), Management, Petroleum Engineering and Petroleum
Graduation date: October 2017 or 2018
Eligibility to work in Trinidad and Tobago
Applications close: 28th April 2017
To learn more about career opportunities at Shell and apply for the Internship Program,
DISCOVER WHAT YOU CAN ACHIEVE AT SHELL.
Shell is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
Links Archive April 12th 2017 April 14th 2017 Navigation Previous Page Next Page