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-   -   No nuts for me....due to NRSA allergy (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/united-airlines-mileageplus/1795582-no-nuts-me-due-nrsa-allergy.html)

porciuscato Oct 10, 16 12:46 pm


Originally Posted by findark (Post 27327963)
This. Especially since, as an NRSA, she should know there are going to be nuts served. Something doesn't add up here.

Anybody who has flown on UAL more than once certainly knows that nuts are served in BF and First. If the NRSA had gone to the purser and mentioned her nut allergy, the purser would have done the logical thing: -- find her a seat in the back. Clearly she didn't want that to happen. And that's pretty lame.

Coskigirl Oct 10, 16 1:00 pm


Originally Posted by dmurphynj (Post 27327553)
I guess I'm a lot more sympathetic; this can truly be a life-or-death thing, and if your back was turned let's say and someone puts it right on your tray in front of you, sure, I can see immediately how panic would set in.

It's great to Monday morning quarterback and say "she should've been a lot more polite" -- but it really is a state of panic when you're confronted with something that absolutely could kill you.

Until you (or I) spend time on a ventilator due to an allergy and luckily survive, I don't think we have any business judging one's reaction to the situation.

Thankfully, I don't have such an allergy but I have several friends and neighbors who do. It affects their life in ways you and I can't imagine. Everything-they-do has to be preplanned, controlled, analyzed and threat-processed. There's never a relaxing moment... even things as simple as a backyard BBQ, or inviting someone's kid over to play video games - could have life-threatening consequences.

Severe allergies are much more serious than most of us give them credit for; having seen a glimpse into what that life is like, I guess I'm a lot more sympathetic than most towards it.

I'm not unsympathetic and in fact have also experienced nut allergies up close and personal when as a teenager I watched my grandmother nearly go into anaphylaxis shock while we were traveling together thousands of miles from home. That doesn't give someone the right to be rude.

I suspect that she did tell the purser but the word did not get to the FA handing them out, hence the shock. However, even after the initial shock of them being sat down in front of and next to her she surely could have turned to the OP and something like "I'm so sorry, I was surprised because I had already spoken with the purser regarding this issue. Do you mind passing on the nuts for this flight?" Or even better, said something to her seatmate before the nuts arrived like "I'm extremely allergic to nuts and I've asked the purser not to serve them to this row. Will this be an issue for you?"

fumje Oct 10, 16 1:38 pm

Strange detail
 
I'm surprised that someone flying NRSA got front-cabin space on a p.s. flight. To/from both SFO and LAX, I have consistently failed to upgrade on them.

Silver Fox Oct 10, 16 1:49 pm


Originally Posted by fumje (Post 27328486)
I'm surprised that someone flying NRSA got front-cabin space on a p.s. flight. To/from both SFO and LAX, I have consistently failed to upgrade on them.

Now you know why. Have you never seen the non-revs causally schmooze at the counter? I have plenty of times.

But back on topic, I have been on a United flight when they have announced that peanuts will not be served. It's strange that so many people have these allergies these days to nuts. It just didn't seem like anyone died/suffered a reaction to them in my day so is it something that is on the increase and if so, why?

In my opinion the FA definitely overreacted in this case and if it was that bad I would want to take myself well away from the danger.

ajGoes Oct 10, 16 2:20 pm


Originally Posted by Silver Fox (Post 27328537)
It's strange that so many people have these allergies these days to nuts. It just didn't seem like anyone died/suffered a reaction to them in my day so is it something that is on the increase and if so, why?

Recent studies suggest the increase in peanut allergies may be the unintended result of shielding infants from exposure to peanuts. Beginning in the 1970s, well-meaning doctors advised their patients to withhold potential allergens from their infants. This certainly prevented some serious or even fatal reactions, but the cost was to prevent many more children from developing a tolerance to the allergens.

Artpen100 Oct 10, 16 2:38 pm


Originally Posted by Bonehead (Post 27327623)
Yes. People die from these allergies.

If the allergy is that severe, should the passenger exercise more caution and not fly? Even if everyone on the plane abstains, isn't there a significant chance of a peanut ground into the seat, or in the seatback? I think what the UA policy suggests is that, because UA cannot guarantee a peanut-free flight, the passenger is also responsible for making good decisions.

pseudoswede Oct 10, 16 3:11 pm

Sorry. Taking a train and boat to Sweden is not going to cut it.

We are aware of the risks, and we do everything to mitigate it--which includes pre-boarding due to medical needs. We wipe down all hard surfaces in our row, plus search under the seats (and cushions) and in the seat pockets for anything unpleasant.

Miss Swede has done 12 TATLs and numerous domestic segments. Only once have we had to use an Epi-Pen in-flight, and that was very precautionary--to this day we're not sure if it was actually an anaphylatic reaction. Fortunately, that was on approach to DEN, so we landed quickly and were met by paramedics on the jet bridge.

PhillyPhlyer40 Oct 10, 16 3:13 pm

OP here.

A few clarifications.

1-she told me she was a NRSA flight attendant who starts work in a week. She did say she was relocating to ewr from the upper west coast (OR/WA). I assumed express as she was all of 23 years old and new. (Maybe it's a false assumption, I just thought ua hires from regionals. She was young)

2-she got the seat fairly. No one on upgrade list and one open seat at t-10. She was dead last to board.

3-it really wasn't said in a malicious way.

I was more ticked that a NRSA was stopping me from an amenity as a paid j pax. So if she decided that she was allergic to fish, was I not allowed to order the fish dish? I could see where this could lead to a genuinely upset customer. (Had I not still been groggy from sleeping aids and a 15 hour flight just before I might've been that POd guy!)

If I had to do over again, I would've made a comment to her to guide her that long term, it's probably not ok to do that. Maybe it will be in F international and she will make the same requests???

edcho Oct 10, 16 4:42 pm

I'm more curious at how she can actually function as an FA.

She can't...
  • ... touch meals in F?
  • ... touch meals in Y? Esp when they hand out packaged snacks?
  • ... tidy up the cabin during quick turn arounds?
  • ... collect trash?
  • ... walk up and down the aisles after the snacks are given out?

I guess she can help with the drinks and then hide in the back? :confused:

bocastephen Oct 10, 16 6:26 pm


Originally Posted by mauld (Post 27324741)
Wow, am I the only person who thinks the FA was out of line? If I was the poster, I would have said "I'll take the nuts" and remained in my paid sear. If she had a problem, she could change her seat. Sorry, but no sympathy here for her allergies. This seems similar to the religious men who can't/won't sit next to females.

No, I am flabbergasted this thread even exists - the NRSA has absolutely no right to interfere with premium (or even Y) cabin service, and especially deny a paying customer any portion of their meal. This entire scenario is absolutely ludicrous, I don't care what allergy she has.

Obviously she wasn't trained properly, otherwise she should have excused herself to Y during meal service, and the OP should be writing in about this so the new employee can be properly trained, else she should lose her nonrev privileges for a lengthly period of time.

PVDtoDEL Oct 10, 16 7:03 pm


Originally Posted by PhillyPhlyer40 (Post 27328876)

1-she told me she was a NRSA flight attendant who starts work in a week. She did say she was relocating to ewr from the upper west coast (OR/WA). I assumed express as she was all of 23 years old and new. (Maybe it's a false assumption, I just thought ua hires from regionals. She was young)

Well, that probably explains everything.

If she's never flown First Class before, she probably didn't even realize the nuts were coming until they arrived (on UX, the nuts would come prepackaged). And then once they came, she just reacted naturally (i.e. "get that stuff away from me").

Should she have offered you an apology and explanation after she calmed down? Yeah. But I can understand how the incident happened in the first place.

With the level of entitlement people have about this stuff nowadays, it's possible she didn't even realize she did anything wrong. But I think most people would be embarrassed by such an experience, so I think she'll probably know to let the ISM know beforehand next time...

WineCountryUA Oct 10, 16 9:00 pm


Originally Posted by edcho (Post 27329199)
I'm more curious at how she can actually function as an FA.....

Mainline F "nut service" is not done on UX flights.

fastair Oct 10, 16 9:30 pm


Originally Posted by PVDtoDEL (Post 27329652)
Well, that probably explains everything.

If she's never flown First Class before, she probably didn't even realize the nuts were coming until they arrived (on UX, the nuts would come prepackaged). And then once they came, she just reacted naturally (i.e. "get that stuff away from me").

Should she have offered you an apology and explanation after she calmed down? Yeah. But I can understand how the incident happened in the first place.

With the level of entitlement people have about this stuff nowadays, it's possible she didn't even realize she did anything wrong. But I think most people would be embarrassed by such an experience, so I think she'll probably know to let the ISM know beforehand next time...

Unless, of course, as a NRSA, she gets a seat at the end of boarding, like the OP said she did, at t-10 min, which is door closure time. I've never flown PS, were these nuts served pre-departure? I'm guessing they were post departure, which would make sense to me, but if they're pre-departure, and you are given a seat as the door closes, pre-notification seems a bit difficult.

Loren Pechtel Oct 10, 16 9:44 pm


Originally Posted by ajGoes (Post 27328685)
Recent studies suggest the increase in peanut allergies may be the unintended result of shielding infants from exposure to peanuts. Beginning in the 1970s, well-meaning doctors advised their patients to withhold potential allergens from their infants. This certainly prevented some serious or even fatal reactions, but the cost was to prevent many more children from developing a tolerance to the allergens.

There's also speculation that the rise in allergies is due to our general cleanliness. We've done a good enough job of eliminating real targets for the immune system to go after that it sometimes messes up and goes after false ones.

United747 Oct 10, 16 9:52 pm

I've got a family member who is a pilot for one of the legacies. He has a really severe peanut allergy. Don't know how he handles it, I would assume just ask the copilot to refrain from having any?

Sounds like the FA might have been flying positive space, putting them at the top of the employee upgrade list.

JVPhoto Oct 10, 16 10:03 pm


Originally Posted by pseudoswede (Post 27327884)

We always scan our surroundings. If someone pulls out a food item containing nuts, we politely ask them to refrain for eating it, then we offer to buy something from the BoB or give a snack from our supply. We've been very fortunate not to have any incidents.

Tip of the hat to you! Something like this I feel 99.99% of the time wouldn't cause any hard feelings or someone to come and make a post about not getting to eat nuts on FT.
Though if you were seated next to me on something like EWR-HKG or SIN-SFO I will probably go through 3/4 of a pound of almonds by the time the flight is through.

WineCountryUA Oct 10, 16 10:07 pm


Originally Posted by fastair (Post 27330160)
.... I've never flown PS, were these nuts served pre-departure? I'm guessing they were post departure, which would make sense to me, but if they're pre-departure, and you are given a seat as the door closes, pre-notification seems a bit difficult.

Post-departure as a part of the first beverage service -- roughly 45 minutes after takeoff.

FWAAA Oct 10, 16 10:22 pm


Originally Posted by PhillyPhlyer40 (Post 27324524)
Or, ride jump seat? Or y?

The flight attendant should have offered to sit on a jumpseat while you enjoyed the mixed nuts. Her behaviour was outrageous. She could have easily moved back to her seat next to the OP once the OP finished the nuts.

I second Major G's comment about physicians and science; the FA's assertion that the OP's mixed nuts were too dangerous to allow is junk science, especially since it doesn't sound like the FA was concerned about the person across the aisle or the passengers immediately in front of or behind the FA.

Additionally, the seats and carpet are cesspools of mixed nut parts and dust, and the if proximity to nut parts and dust were a serious problem for those with allergies, there would be many more cases of anaphylactic shock on UA and AA flights.

When well-meaning individuals sell their junk science with "do as I say or I may die" (I'm paraphrasing here), logic and science are discarded in favor of illogical bombast.

A brand-new flight attendant (she starts work next week) and already elevating her views (junk science that they are) above the customers. Not a favorable trend for the future.

findark Oct 10, 16 10:57 pm


Originally Posted by WineCountryUA (Post 27330068)
Mainline F "nut service" is not done on UX flights.

Unless I'm going completely crazy the UX meal service (if on a meal flight) includes the ramekin of nuts.

(Just to be sure, I checked). But you're right that meals on UX are few and far between.

United747 Oct 10, 16 11:05 pm


Originally Posted by findark (Post 27330474)
Unless I'm going completely crazy the UX meal service (if on a meal flight) includes the ramekin of nuts.

(Just to be sure, I checked). But you're right that meals on UX are few and far between.

The snack mix also had "ranch soy nuts" on all UAX flights after 9:45am.

DENviaLAX Oct 10, 16 11:29 pm

To me it seems the general complaint and "outage" in this thread for the young lady and her food allergy is less about the fact that the OP couldn't enjoy a couple dozen nuts, and more about the fact that she was a non-rev. To me that is interesting and is something that really shouldn't matter in the least bit. Especially given the detail that she was in the process of relocating, and therefore most likely flying positive space. Which means she is no different than any other person on that plane who had their seat paid for them by their company for company business. Suggesting that she should give up a seat in which she is entitled to (as much as the OP was entitled to their's) is kind of insulting in my eyes. Having a medical ailment shouldn't be grounds for being treated lesser. "Go sit in coach for 6 hours so I can enjoy a handful of nuts for 5 minutes!" Really? Comes off very DYKWIA. In my eyes, anyway.

davie355 Oct 10, 16 11:40 pm


Originally Posted by Major G (Post 27325634)
There is no medical study supporting this belief ...

Pants on fire false. Numerous refereed articles support the existence of peanut dust allergies.


Originally Posted by FWAAA (Post 27330353)
... junk science ...

That is irresponsible to say, and dangerous to public health. I'm a PhD student and author of several peer-reviewed publications in medical journals.

I urge everyone to respect the wishes of fellow passengers with allergies.

Silver Fox Oct 11, 16 2:54 am


Originally Posted by davie355 (Post 27330569)
Pants on fire false. Numerous refereed articles support the existence of peanut dust allergies.


That is irresponsible to say, and dangerous to public health. I'm a PhD student and author of several peer-reviewed publications in medical journals.

I urge everyone to respect the wishes of fellow passengers with allergies.

No matter how they present their wishes? I think you are missing the point somewhat. Respect is a two way street.

Bonehead Oct 11, 16 8:27 am


Originally Posted by Silver Fox (Post 27330917)
No matter how they present their wishes? I think you are missing the point somewhat. Respect is a two way street.

She may not have handled it perfectly, but in any case it's critical that someone with a severe nut allergy be given deferential treatment. I urge people to put themselves in the position of having a child or other close relative with one of these life-threatening allergies. Going without your nuts for a few hours isn't going to kill you.

dmurphynj Oct 11, 16 8:33 am


Originally Posted by Bonehead (Post 27331620)
She may not have handled it perfectly, but in any case it's critical that someone with a severe nut allergy be given deferential treatment. I urge people to put themselves in the position of having a child or other close relative with one of these life-threatening allergies. Going without your nuts for a few hours isn't going to kill you.

I'm seriously stunned at the lack of empathy in this thread. Or, maybe I shouldn't be. It's reflective of the FlyerTalk spirit. Just an offshoot of the same "My reading light didn't work, how much can I extort from the airline?" mentality.

fastair Oct 11, 16 8:47 am


Originally Posted by dmurphynj (Post 27331648)
I'm seriously stunned at the lack of empathy in this thread. Or, maybe I shouldn't be. It's reflective of the FlyerTalk spirit. Just an offshoot of the same "My reading light didn't work, how much can I extort from the airline?" mentality.

I don't believe it's lack of empathy, it's psuedo-elitism. Remember, this wasn't a person, it was a NRSA. The negative posts don't knock the food allergy per se, they knock WHO had the food allergy.

fly18725 Oct 11, 16 8:55 am


Originally Posted by DENviaLAX (Post 27330555)
To me it seems the general complaint and "outage" in this thread for the young lady and her food allergy is less about the fact that the OP couldn't enjoy a couple dozen nuts, and more about the fact that she was a non-rev. To me that is interesting and is something that really shouldn't matter in the least bit. Especially given the detail that she was in the process of relocating, and therefore most likely flying positive space. Which means she is no different than any other person on that plane who had their seat paid for them by their company for company business. Suggesting that she should give up a seat in which she is entitled to (as much as the OP was entitled to their's) is kind of insulting in my eyes. Having a medical ailment shouldn't be grounds for being treated lesser. "Go sit in coach for 6 hours so I can enjoy a handful of nuts for 5 minutes!" Really? Comes off very DYKWIA. In my eyes, anyway.

We want NRSAs (or employees, for that matter) to behave like "regular" passengers except when we don't.

artvandalay Oct 11, 16 9:42 am


Originally Posted by halls120 (Post 27324975)
If you are a FA who is allergic to nuts, why are you sitting in a business cabin where nuts are served?

^ Exactly. For that matter, why are you a FA?

fastflyer Oct 11, 16 10:09 am

A ten-minute interruption occurred last week on an AA flight (BDL-DFW), hub-bound so the FAs were particularly delay conscious.

Flight was fully boarded, and the gate agent was finalizing paperwork with the cockpit, when a 40-something woman from coach marched up the aisle and talked in an agitated way with each FA. Once I started listening more closely I realized it was a nut allergy rant. AA doesn't serve peanuts: neither among the coach snacks nor in the first meal service. The FAs repeated this several times.

The woman then shifted her complaint and demanded that the FAs give a public address instructing all passengers on the plane not to eat nor even to access any peanut products. They declined this request, but said she could negotiate with the passengers seated near her. The pilot then emerged and said do you want to fly with us today or not, I need to know now. She retreated back to coach and the flight went smoothly from that point forward.

pseudoswede Oct 11, 16 10:51 am


Originally Posted by fastflyer (Post 27332078)
...when a 40-something woman from coach marched up the aisle and talked in an agitated way with each FA.

The woman then shifted her complaint and demanded that the FAs give a public address instructing all passengers on the plane not to eat nor even to access any peanut products. They declined this request, but said she could negotiate with the passengers seated near her.

We've read that AA FAs are like that, which is why we try to avoid flying with them. We've had great luck with UA FAs making an area-only announcement. They are glad to do it--as long as you're nice about it. Kindness goes a long way.

So I guess here is my question: would you be more forgiving if the FA made the announcement or if the parent did?

Artpen100 Oct 11, 16 11:15 am


Originally Posted by pseudoswede (Post 27328872)
Sorry. Taking a train and boat to Sweden is not going to cut it.

Sweden is nice, but not worth dying for.

I wonder why I have never seen an animal allergy person confronting a person with a service animal on board.

Miggles Oct 11, 16 12:33 pm


Originally Posted by Artpen100 (Post 27327070)
we encourage customers to review any health concerns with their physicians prior to flying."

Such customers would probably rather cling to their fear than be corrected and assured by their physicians that their concerns are way overblown. Just take a look at how the anti-vaccine craziness grew to crisis proportions.

And to put this in perspective, the airport that this NRSA used probably has plenty of nut particles in the air already. Furthermore, the seat that she sat in probably has nut crumbs as well. Unless her fellow passenger has the table manners of Cookie Monster, I doubt that she was every in any danger.

dmurphynj Oct 11, 16 1:07 pm


Originally Posted by Miggles (Post 27332673)
Such customers would probably rather cling to their fear than be corrected and assured by their physicians that their concerns are way overblown. Just take a look at how the anti-vaccine craziness grew to crisis proportions.

You're right; my friend's 5-year-old was on a ventilator because he blew his airborne out of proportion.

Come on.

CLEContinental Oct 11, 16 1:48 pm

So if I happen to suffer from DVT, it's acceptable for me to demand to use the seatback in front of me to keep my legs elevated?

If I have pet allergies, I can demand that all service animals (including the fake family pet comfort animals) be banished to the coat closet?

Here's a thought: If you have a severe allergy, don't take a job where you are reasonably expected to come into regular contact with your particular allergen.

A major problem with today's society = my problem will be forced to become your problem and I demand special accommodations for all of my problems (real, perceived or exaggerated) at your expense (aka Special Snowflake Syndrome or Millennial Syndrome).

erik123 Oct 11, 16 2:04 pm


Originally Posted by CLEContinental (Post 27333034)

A major problem with today's society = my problem will be forced to become your problem and I demand special accommodations for all of my problems (real, perceived or exaggerated) at your expense (aka Special Snowflake Syndrome or Millennial Syndrome).

I think you might have insensitivis? It's highly contagious on FT.

CLEContinental Oct 11, 16 2:09 pm


Originally Posted by erik123 (Post 27333094)
I think you might have insensitivis? It's highly contagious on FT.

Nope. I can be very sensitive to the needs of others. Had this passenger politely said "Excuse me, I really hate to bother you, but I have a sensitivity and allergy to nut products; would it trouble you to refrain from eating them on this flight"?, then there is absolutely no problem.

But the "Special Snowflake Syndrome" that I referred to where someone makes a demand that their issue be immediately accommodated above everyone else's needs - well that gets met by a huge dose of "insensitivis". Seat poaching without asking can be classified in the same bucket.

Bonehead Oct 11, 16 3:12 pm


Originally Posted by CLEContinental (Post 27333115)
...But the "Special Snowflake Syndrome" that I referred to where someone makes a demand that their issue be immediately accommodated above everyone else's needs - well that gets met by a huge dose of "insensitivis"....

Are you saying that just because someone acts in a way that doesn't meet your expectations of civility that you would do something that could threaten their life? These allergies are real and are not something that you or anyone else should treat so cavalierly.

CLEContinental Oct 11, 16 3:50 pm


Originally Posted by Bonehead (Post 27333357)
Are you saying that just because someone acts in a way that doesn't meet your expectations of civility that you would do something that could threaten their life? These allergies are real and are not something that you or anyone else should treat so cavalierly.

Well to be clear, this NRSA FA potentially endangered her own life with her actions. She knowingly took a job where one of the duties is to regularly come into contact with nuts and/or nut products when they are served to customers on a daily basis (including VERY HIGH potential for residual exposure from past flights). Then she hopped onto a plane without discussing this with anyone in advance, did not carry an epipen, and did not apparently care enough to even think about any of this in advance. She also put her employer at risk with her actions.

Then, she decided that she would make a big stink and impose her problem onto a completely innocent person.

No, I would not endanger her. I'd grit my teeth and bear it like the OP. But I'd also call her out on her blatant stupidity and selfishness to even act in such an idiotic manner.

fastair Oct 11, 16 6:16 pm


Originally Posted by CLEContinental (Post 27333519)
Well to be clear, this NRSA FA potentially endangered her own life with her actions. She knowingly took a job where one of the duties is to regularly come into contact with nuts and/or nut products when they are served to customers on a daily basis (including VERY HIGH potential for residual exposure from past flights). Then she hopped onto a plane without discussing this with anyone in advance, did not carry an epipen, and did not apparently care enough to even think about any of this in advance. She also put her employer at risk with her actions.

Then, she decided that she would make a big stink and impose her problem onto a completely innocent person.

No, I would not endanger her. I'd grit my teeth and bear it like the OP. But I'd also call her out on her blatant stupidity and selfishness to even act in such an idiotic manner.

I missed the part where the OP stayed she had disclosed that she carried no epipen or other adrenaline injectable. Was it exited out?

bocastephen Oct 11, 16 6:23 pm


Originally Posted by Bonehead (Post 27333357)
Are you saying that just because someone acts in a way that doesn't meet your expectations of civility that you would do something that could threaten their life? These allergies are real and are not something that you or anyone else should treat so cavalierly.

The key issue here, is the status of said passenger. If it was a paying passenger, this would be a legitimate argument about eating nuts vs inconveniencing someone nearby, but as we're dealing with a nonrev who should not even be speaking with a customer let alone making demands of them, the nonrev should have excused themselves to another part of the cabin until after the meal service without making a sound to the customer.


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