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-   -   UA Pilot Diverts to Remove Autistic Child From Plane for Safety Reasons (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/united-airlines-mileageplus/1678775-ua-pilot-diverts-remove-autistic-child-plane-safety-reasons.html)

mduell May 11, 15 6:18 pm


Originally Posted by MikeMpls (Post 24801005)

W:eek:w that's a bad article, failing even the most basic details of the story:
"an Oregon family was forced to evacuate a United Airlines flight during a layover in Houston"

mrboom May 11, 15 6:41 pm

The FA's primary responsibility is the safety of the passengers. I do not care of the FA did not cater to the mother in a manner acceptable to her or other ignorant passengers.

I am pleased the FA focused on the needs of the many over the selfish mother.

The mother's lack of planning should not become anyone's emergency.

JakiChan May 11, 15 7:02 pm


Originally Posted by waxearwings (Post 24800477)
For all those angrily and absolutely defending UA, I'm curious about something: Suppose the family had been thoroughly prepared with a hot meal in an insulated bag, and some terrible thief had surreptitiously stolen it from them prior to boarding. If all the other facts alleged by Mom were the same (i.e. family notices no meal, panics, asks to buy hot meal, gets cold sandwich, asks to buy hot F meal, gets rejected, then tells FA daughter might scratch if doesn't get hot meal, gets meal, everyone is calm and happy, plane diverts to SLC), would UA still be justified in diverting?

Yes, because of what the mother said.

Again, look at what she said she said, in her own words. Because, with what she did, she didn't "tell FA daughter might scratch" - she threatened a "meltdown" with scratching and other violence.

JakiChan May 11, 15 7:11 pm


Originally Posted by dutyfree (Post 24801021)
Future solution: Maybe UA should start offering JAL's hugely popular "Ramen de Sky." My kids, when young, didn't mind the 11-hour flight because of the unlimited instant noodles.

Is it popular just because it's free, or is it really good instant ramen? Is it completely dry or is it the perishable kind with good noodles?

I had suggested cup-of-soup earlier. All they would have needed was hot water. It doesn't go bad. Given what they know (kid gets cranky when blood sugar is low, requires hot food) I don't see how her parents wouldn't have that stuff in their bags at all times.

mduell May 11, 15 7:16 pm


Originally Posted by JakiChan (Post 24801254)
I had suggested cup-of-soup earlier. All they would have needed was hot water. It doesn't go bad. Given what they know (kid gets cranky when blood sugar is low, requires hot food) I don't see how her parents wouldn't have that stuff in their bags at all times.

Do you really want to give a cup of hot noodles/water to someone threatening a meltdown in a confined area? Do we know if ramen was part of the kid's regular diet?

dutyfree May 11, 15 7:23 pm


Originally Posted by JakiChan (Post 24801254)
Is it popular just because it's free, or is it really good instant ramen? Is it completely dry or is it the perishable kind with good noodles?

I didn't partake, and cannot entirely trust my the palate of my then 10 and 13 year olds. But JAL's Ramen de Sky looked like the standard dry kind (which we limited at home because they are hazardous to your health). Yes, of course, the mom should have had her own noodles or instant rice bowls. But she didn't and the FA could have stepped up with empathic customer service and averted the drama - and the horrendous publicity.

dutyfree May 11, 15 7:28 pm


Originally Posted by mduell (Post 24801274)
Do you really want to give a cup of hot noodles/water to someone threatening a meltdown in a confined area? Do we know if ramen was part of the kid's regular diet?

Hmm....this was meant to be tongue in cheek, especially because it's doubtful that UA will adopt JAL's in-flight cuisine. But the answer to your question, from a parent who has succumbed and let young kids eat noodles, is that you wait for them to cool off, and pour off the liquid, if necessary. (Of course we exclusively served the healthy ones.):)

mrboom May 11, 15 7:42 pm


Originally Posted by dutyfree (Post 24801305)
I didn't partake, and cannot entirely trust my the palate of my then 10 and 13 year olds. But JAL's Ramen de Sky looked like the standard dry kind (which we limited at home because they are hazardous to your health). Yes, of course, the mom should have had her own noodles or instant rice bowls. But she didn't and the FA could have stepped up with empathic customer service and averted the drama - and the horrendous publicity.

It is not the FA's responsibility to avert drama caused by the mother's lack of preparedness.

It is the mother's responsibility to understand the needs of her child, especially on during travel.

DL2SXM May 11, 15 7:55 pm

it seems that UA's answer is always to divert and let someone else deal with the issue at hand. UA needs to better train its flight attendants and pilots. Apparently Delta had no problem flying the young girl and her family back home, shame on UA. United definitely could have done more to comfort this family and to ensure they made it home...with this, they epically failed. Shame on this UA flight crew.

dutyfree May 11, 15 7:59 pm


Originally Posted by mrboom (Post 24801400)
It is not the FA's responsibility to avert drama caused by the mother's lack of preparedness.

Nobody is saying it was the FA's responsibility to find a warm meal for the girl. But a little kindness in a customer service role does not hurt, as is evidenced daily on other airlines.

According to the passengers on the plane (including one on this thread), the girl never was a threat to anyone. What happened, in fact, was a miscommunication between the FA and the pilot. This was apparent when the paramedics boarded the plane and asked who had been scratched. A over-the-top reaction according to multiple witnesses.

xSTRIKEx6864 May 11, 15 8:20 pm

Diverting the plane in this case was unneeded and wasted time of every passenger onboard.

JakiChan May 11, 15 8:21 pm


Originally Posted by mduell (Post 24801274)
Do you really want to give a cup of hot noodles/water to someone threatening a meltdown in a confined area? Do we know if ramen was part of the kid's regular diet?

No, we don't. However, all the parent said was that the kid was GOING to have a meltdown if the kid didn't get hot food. I presented a way for kid to have hot food, regardless of how the plane is catered. If the parents had made, or were unable to make, such preparations they should make that known. We do know that they made it the airlines problem, and that the kid's mom threatened the airline with having to manage a meltdown.


Originally Posted by dutyfree (Post 24801464)
According to the passengers on the plane (including one on this thread), the girl never threatened anyone. What happened, in fact, was a miscommunication between the FA and the pilot. This was apparent when the paramedics boarded the plane and asked who had been scratched. A over-the-top reaction according to multiple witnesses.

According to the mom and what she said she said, the mom is the one who made threats. I haven't seen anything that covered what the FA told the pilot.

NewportGuy May 11, 15 8:28 pm


Originally Posted by mduell (Post 24801047)
W:eek:w that's a bad article, failing even the most basic details of the story:
"an Oregon family was forced to evacuate a United Airlines flight during a layover in Houston"

I have been amazed over the last couple of days watching network news coverage of this, and presenting only the family's version of events. ABC was the worst, all family whining and no opinions from other passengers I saw on other newscasts supporting the actions of United. I guess that wouldn't make it so interesting.

austin_modern May 11, 15 8:28 pm

In high school there was the short bus, does this not exist for commercial airlines? Seems like events like this are constantly coming up in the news.

mduell May 11, 15 8:31 pm


Originally Posted by dutyfree (Post 24801325)
Hmm....this was meant to be tongue in cheek, especially because it's doubtful that UA will adopt JAL's in-flight cuisine. But the answer to your question, from a parent who has succumbed and let young kids eat noodles, is that you wait for them to cool off, and pour off the liquid, if necessary. (Of course we exclusively served the healthy ones.):)

Would they be hot enough for the autist's preferences? Is it even a food the autist would consider consuming? It's all speculation.


Originally Posted by DL2SXM (Post 24801449)
it seems that UA's answer is always to divert and let someone else deal with the issue at hand. UA needs to better train its flight attendants and pilots. Apparently Delta had no problem flying the young girl and her family back home, shame on UA. United definitely could have done more to comfort this family and to ensure they made it home...with this, they epically failed. Shame on this UA flight crew.

Huh? UA had transported the family PDX-xxx-MCO-IAH without reported incident -- a lot longer than SLC-PDX.


Originally Posted by dutyfree (Post 24801464)
According to the passengers on the plane (including one on this thread), the girl never threatened anyone.

The mother did, according to her own statements.


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