United Airlines Changes Policy For Displacing Passengers (UPDATE)
UPDATE (4/15/2017 at 12:36 p.m. ET):
After a video went viral of a passenger being violenty dragged off a United Airlines plane, the company has changed their policies for how they displace travelers.
Effective immediately, a passenger cannot be removed to accommodate a United crew member unless it's essential for the crew member to make the flight in order to work another flight, TMZ reported.
The crew member also has to arrive 60 minutes before the doors close.
Essentially, this new policy makes it so crew members cannot bump a passenger that is already seated in one of the airline's planes.
Instead, these types of decisions will be made prior to passengers boarding the jet.
If I purchase a particular seat on a particular flight on a particular date & time then why am I not guaranteed that seat? #UnitedAirlinesGene Benjamin Baker (@gbenjaminbaker) April 13, 2017
UPDATE (4/11/2017 at 5:03 p.m. ET):
A 69-year-old man named Dr. David Dao was violently pulled from his seat on an overbooked United Airlines flight earlier in the week. After several attempts at a public statement, CEO Oscar Munoz is finally owning up to the airline's terrible actions.
In the first statement, the CEO apologized in what people believed to be a backhanded sort of way, saying they "had to re-accommodate these customers." In another statement, he described the passenger as "disruptive and belligerent."
But finally, he pledged a full review by April 30 "to fix what's broken so this never happens again."
"I want you to know that we take full responsibility and we will work to make it right. I promise you we will do better," he explained in a statement on Tuesday, April 11.
Scroll down to read the letter he wrote employees prior to the apology, which includes a part where he praises them for "going above and beyond."
UPDATE (4/11/2017 at 2:45 p.m. ET):
More details are now surfacing about United Airlines passenger Dr. David Dao — the man who got violently dragged out of his plane seat by security earlier in the week.
Now, there are reports of his criminal past, including his involvement in trading drugs for sex in the early 2000s.
According to Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure documents, the 69-year-old was arrested in 2003 after an undercover investigation. They found he had been sexually interested in a male patient whom he had given a physical and genital examination to. After making the patient his office manager, the patient quit the job due to "inappropriate" remarks.
The Kentucky-based doctor then began giving him prescription drugs in exchange for sexual acts, the documents state. The two would often meet at hotel rooms and worked together to obtain the drugs over three years.
The doctor was convicted for several felonies in 2004 — incuding obtaining drugs by fraud or deceit — and then put on supervised probation for 5 years. The patient was also indicted in the case.
As of 2015, the board allowed Dr. Dao to continue practicing if he finished probation and psychological evaluations, the Louisville Courier-Journal reported.
UPDATE (4/11/2017 at 11:00 a.m. ET):
The internet has been in a frenzy this week over the horrifying videos that emerged from a recent United Airlines flight. The footage showed a passenger being physically dragged out of his seat by security, due to an overbooked flight.
The altercation left the passenger bloody and visibly shaken and now, new details have emerged about his identity.
The man can be identified as 69-year-old father and grandfather Dr. David Dao. He's a Vietnamese-American who specializes in internal medicine, according to Daily Mail.
Dr. Dao — who reportedly went to medical school in Vietnam in the 1970s — has five children, four of which are also doctors. His wife Teresa is a pediatrician who trained at Ho Chi Minh University in Saigon and currently has a clinic in Elizabethtown, Kentucky.
As for their children, their eldest son, Tim, is 34 and a Texas-based doctor. Daughter Christine, 33, is a doctor in Durham, NC. Son Ben, 31, graduated from med school, and their youngest daughter Angela, 27, graduated in medicine from the University of Kentucky. Their daughter Crystal, who does not work in medicine, is a mother residing in Barrington, Illinois.
Dr. Dao — who said he couldn't get off the flight because he had to get back to his patients — has worked at Hardin Memorial Hospital and owned a medical practice.
The letter below has also been circulating from United Airlines' CEO Oscar Munoz to employees, where he commends them for "going above and beyond."
Original story (4/10/2017 at 4:00 p.m. ET):
So much for politely asking for volunteers…
Videos of United Airlines security physically dragging a passenger off their aircraft is going viral. And the footage is super disturbing.
A passenger was forcibly dragged off a plane because United Airlines overbooked his flight https://t.co/vKr82sGhdIThe Independent (@Independent) April 10, 2017
According to passengers on the flight, the airline overbooked tickets to Louisville and then randomly selected people to get off the flight so the crew could have a seat.
One Reddit user explained, "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."
The passenger added, "The offer was increased to $800, but no one volunteered... 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."
That's when security entered the plane and violently took matters into their own hands.
Looks like I'll be boycotting #UnitedAirlines for the remainder of my book tourGirl On Fire (@tanayawinder) April 10, 2017
The footage of them dragging him out is pretty horrifying, but what happened next may be even more upsetting. In some new videos that emerged, the man seems traumatized as he bleeds from his mouth.
It sounds like he's repeating the phrase, "Just kill me," while clutching the curtains on the plane.
In another video, he's heard saying, "I have to go home," while authorities try to get him off the plane.
The internet is of course outraged, with many people saying they're boycotting the airline.
During these incidents, don't airlines like United ever say, "I wonder how this would look splashed all over the news." #UnitedAirlinesMorgan Sacco (@Morgan_Sacco) April 10, 2017
Celebs have been weighing in all over Twitter, as well.
cannot wait to use "i will re-accommodate your ass" in my next fightchristine teigen (@chrissyteigen) April 10, 2017
Getting on a United flight this morning. Excited to, I don't know... stay on?Joss Whedon (@joss) April 10, 2017
The outrage continues...
Seriously? Video: A United Airlines passenger is violently dragged off an overbooked plane Quartz https://t.co/P5dRNG66IfKatie Couric (@katiecouric) April 10, 2017
I am appalled and absolutely disgusted....this is unacceptable. https://t.co/ZO7X2CbdveZendaya (@Zendaya) April 10, 2017
The airline released a statement, without commenting whatsoever on the violence.
They said the flight was overbooked and "after our team looked for volunteers, one customer refused to leave the aircraft voluntarily and law enforcement was asked to come to the gate."
As many Twitter users are saying, we don't think that overbooking problem will be an issue anymore...
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