United Airlines Updates Policy After Doctor Dragged Off Flight

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — United Airlines has updated its policies after the airline was harshly criticized following an incident where a passenger was dragged off a flight earlier this week.

United Airlines now says it will require staff and crew to check in at least 60 minutes before a flight.

The change comes less than a week after Dr. David Dao was seen on cell phone video being dragged off a flight after refusing to give up his seat for a United Airlines crew member.

Dao said he was a doctor and had to get home to patients.

Dao suffered a severe concussion, broken nose, and lost two front teeth.

A statement was released by Dao’s attorneys on Tuesday, saying he was undergoing treatment at a Chicago hospital for his injuries.

“The family of Dr. Dao wants the world to know that they are very appreciative of the outpouring of prayers, concern and support they have received. Currently, they are focused only on Dr. Dao’s medical care and treatment,” Chicago attorney Stephen L. Golan of Golan Christie Taglia said in a news release.

The firm, along with Chicago aviation attorney Thomas A. Demetrio of Corboy & Demetrio, is representing the Dao family.

Dao plans to file a lawsuit against the airline.

United Airlines chief executive officer Oscar Munoz issued an apology Tuesday for the treatment of a passenger dragged off a plane, saying “No one should ever be mistreated this way.”

Comments

One Comment

  1. Joe Ewing says:

    Chang motto to United Airlines will beat others prices>Not people!

  2. Most discussions and media coverage miss United’s essential failure – not having enough procedures in place to involve management when exceptions happen, like the forced removal of any passenger, not just an overbooked one.

    Most coverage also ignores that overbooking and resulting compensation is like a carnival game the airlines play where they can’t lose, at least in dollars. In most cases, even cash compensation they must pay to the low-fare-paying passenger getting bumped is much less than the last-minute ticket they just sold on the same day. And United, along with other airlines, is making it easier to find ticketed passengers without seats to bump as they will sell a seat in Economy without a seat to assign if Economy Plus has seats open, and with new Basic Economy fares those buying will not get assigned seats in any case. Of course, you could always reduce your bumping chances by buying an Economy Plus seat if no other seat was available, again giving the airline more money towards the bottom line.

    Two changes can make the compensation a little bit fairer, including raising the limits on what they can offer like Delta has done. First, make the “voucher” volunteers agree to take usable for anything the airline sells on it’s website or by phone, which would allow usage for more types of fares and upgrades or even club passes (nicer way to spend the time while waiting for the later flight). Secondly, the cash compensation offered when involuntarily bumped should be without limit at four times the cost of the most expensive ticket sold in the passenger’s cabin, better penalizing the airline for selling expensive last minute tickets that result in overbooking.

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