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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)

PhillyPhlyer40 Oct 9, 16 4:58 pm

No nuts for me....due to NRSA allergy
 
Got a weird one.

Not a total complaint, more of an irritant.

PS flight yesterday. Ended up with a new (VERY) FA non-rev next to me. (Think she was express).

Anyway, nuts came, and the FA put hers down first. (I was in window). She jumped like the FA just threw a copperhead on her tray table, and said I'm highly allergic and can't have any near me.

Well, he went to hand ME the nuts nuts, and she said again, "that's too close, none there either". :confused:

Now, we left with open Y space. I was on a PAID bf seat. Am I wrong to feel that she shouldn't inconvenience paying pax over herself? Don't think they serve nuts in Y, and maybe that is better suited to her needs?

Not sure if I should write in. Feel that maybe UA should tell her she can't tell paying pax to "cut the nuts"! Or, ride jump seat? Or y?

zrs70 Oct 9, 16 5:06 pm

I thought the nut allergy was about peanuts (as opposed to the other nuts that UA serves).

Hammer0425 Oct 9, 16 5:18 pm

How do you know she was new, how do you know she was express, how do you know she was a standby (over positive space), etc?

I'm sure there's some written policy about it somewhere but in the big picture of life, did that really affect much? Whole meal, yeah, that'd be a big deal. If it was me, rather than risking getting someone in trouble and possibly facing job action without being totally sure of the situation, next time (and hopefully it doesn't happen again!) maybe just sarcastically say something to your seat mate like "gee I paid a lot of money for this seat, hopefully there's nothing else on the flight I'll have to skip. Are there any other allergies we should tell the flight attendant about now?" If she's actually a standby, she'll probably get the hint to not do it again.

CappuccinoAddict Oct 9, 16 5:34 pm


Originally Posted by Hammer0425 (Post 27324591)
How do you know she was new, how do you know she was express, how do you know she was a standby (over positive space), etc?

I'm sure there's some written policy about it somewhere but in the big picture of life, did that really affect much? Whole meal, yeah, that'd be a big deal. If it was me, rather than risking getting someone in trouble and possibly facing job action without being totally sure of the situation, next time (and hopefully it doesn't happen again!) maybe just sarcastically say something to your seat mate like "gee I paid a lot of money for this seat, hopefully there's nothing else on the flight I'll have to skip. Are there any other allergies we should tell the flight attendant about now?" If she's actually a standby, she'll probably get the hint to not do it again.

Get the hint not to do it again? You do realize some people are deathly allergic to nuts and trace amounts could kill them? Or apparently not. It is so insensitive to place blame on this person. It doesn't matter how or why she got in the seat; she was either entitled to be there by company policy or she paid to be there. That is an irrelevant matter.

LukasVIE Oct 9, 16 5:41 pm

Hmm, a flight attendant that's extremely allergic to nuts, a problem should she ever work in a premium cabin...

I understand where you are coming from and I think that the FA seated next to you should have handled it better - something like " I am sorry to inconvenience you but I am allergic to nuts" etc...

dmurphynj Oct 9, 16 5:45 pm

Are we really threatening to put someone's job at risk because they have a nut allergy?

If missing out on some broken cashews is the worst thing that happens in your day, I'm quite jealous.

I don't have a nut allergy but one of my son's friends has a severe airborne nut allergy. There's nothing I wouldn't do to accommodate him -- or anyone else in the same situation. In the grand scheme, what's a little (admittedly tasty) ramekin to me is genuinely a life and death for others.

Be thankful for your health and move on. Just my $0.02 .....

SPLITTERZ Oct 9, 16 5:50 pm

I was in the wrong.

Hammer0425 Oct 9, 16 6:01 pm


Originally Posted by CappuccinoAddict (Post 27324641)
Get the hint not to do it again? You do realize some people are deathly allergic to nuts and trace amounts could kill them? Or apparently not. It is so insensitive to place blame on this person. It doesn't matter how or why she got in the seat; she was either entitled to be there by company policy or she paid to be there. That is an irrelevant matter.

Not blaming the person but if they are an airline employee flying standby I imagine that there's a provision to sitting in any cabin that you can't request special accommodations that as a result reduce the service that paying passengers get.

mauld Oct 9, 16 6:03 pm

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.

davie355 Oct 9, 16 6:03 pm

She should have requested, before takeoff, suspension of all nut service on this flight. That would have been fair.

From the customer service angle, something is definitely not right with the way OP described the situation.

fastair Oct 9, 16 6:04 pm


Originally Posted by SPLITTERZ (Post 27324702)
That's garbage. If they have a nut allergy, they shouldn't sit in that cabin/seat. It appalling that she wasn't asked to move to me, and you a paying customer was inconvenienced. Sorry that happened to you, even if it isn't a big issue in the grand scheme of things.

I'm going to guess you don't operate a business that the ADA covers (airlines aren't regulated by the ADA, but a very similar piece of legislation called the ACAA.). If you did, I would ask your council about food allergies and the ADA and suits that have been settled over alleged violations. A 5 second google will provide you enough data to know that you are very wrong on your interpretation of what accommodations must be made for people with food allergies

mauld Oct 9, 16 6:19 pm


Originally Posted by davie355 (Post 27324745)
She should have requested, before takeoff, suspension of all nut service on this flight. That would have been fair.

From the customer service angle, something is definitely not right with the way OP described the situation.

What!!!!! Are you kidding me? Because she has an allergy, she gets to inconvince everyone on that flight?? What happens when she is working a flight, will catering have to get her approval for all meals?? No, SHE was out of line. She could have quietly said, "I am very allergic and I would you mind passing on the nuts", or she could have moved to an open seat.

fastair Oct 9, 16 6:34 pm


Originally Posted by Hammer0425 (Post 27324732)
Not blaming the person but if they are an airline employee flying standby I imagine that there's a provision to sitting in any cabin that you can't request special accommodations that as a result reduce the service that paying passengers get.

No such provision. If a wheelchair is needed for NRSA, it's handled the same way it would be for ANY customer, be it on a revenue ticket, a free ticket due to loyalty, or a discounted ticket due to employment benefit Discrimination based on any protected characteristics exist regardless of how you became a customer/passenger. In some cases, the law may not have developed to regulate it, but the concept still applies.

On nuts, UA's policy is quite undefined. https://www.united.com/web/en-US/con...allergies.aspx

Most severe nut allergies are to peanuts, but people are allergic to other nuts too, and as you see on menus and packaging, they are often packaged in facilities with cross-contamination. I'm betting that heating them up makes the aresolization more intense too.

atword Oct 9, 16 6:38 pm

I understand the irritant and enjoy the nuts myself. But I work with someone that has a peanut allergy and it's a serious matter. I also have a non life threatening food allergy. Sorry for the inconvenience OP. Some of us with food allergies have a bad day once In a while, like anyone, and get tired of explaining repeatedly.

Most on this thread would stick up for themselves. Why is the person with an allergy not allowed to do so?

mauld Oct 9, 16 7:05 pm


Originally Posted by davie355 (Post 27324745)
She should have requested, before takeoff, suspension of all nut service on this flight. That would have been fair.

You meant that statement as a joke, right... too funny 😄😅

halls120 Oct 9, 16 7:12 pm


Originally Posted by CappuccinoAddict (Post 27324641)
Get the hint not to do it again? You do realize some people are deathly allergic to nuts and trace amounts could kill them? Or apparently not. It is so insensitive to place blame on this person. It doesn't matter how or why she got in the seat; she was either entitled to be there by company policy or she paid to be there. That is an irrelevant matter.

If you are a FA who is allergic to nuts, why are you sitting in a business cabin where nuts are served?

Michael D Oct 9, 16 7:15 pm


Originally Posted by fastair (Post 27324746)
I'm going to guess you don't operate a business that the ADA covers (airlines aren't regulated by the ADA, but a very similar piece of legislation called the ACAA.). If you did, I would ask your council about food allergies and the ADA and suits that have been settled over alleged violations. A 5 second google will provide you enough data to know that you are very wrong on your interpretation of what accommodations must be made for people with food allergies

ACAA says each airline is free to make its own peanut policy. What is United's policy?
( http://allergylawproject.com/2015/01...senger-rights/ )

I don't like this NRSA versus 'real' customer debate especially when it comes to safety. It is immaterial except that perhaps the airline should have a protocol for their employees who fly.

If I did have an allergy with which I wasn't comfortable with the person next to me eating my allergen, then I would also be uncomfortable with the person in front, behind, to my other side and the FA walking up the aisle with the allergen in uncover ramekins. I would have also made my situation known to the Gate Attendants and before the flight took off every crew member I met if they weren't proactive and addressed my needs when I took my seat.

It is surprising (sarcasm) that airlines doesn't have an alternative boarding snack for this situation.

AlanInDC Oct 9, 16 7:31 pm

I do agree with the OP that the FA should have moved to a different seat or perhaps to a jump seat -- definitely not inconvenience a passenger especially in a premium cabin.

I don't understand how an airline can even employ a FA with such allergy that can't be routinely controlled by medication. Seems like someone who needs a new job like a GA or something.

TonyBurr Oct 9, 16 7:38 pm

If she really is a non rev she should have moved to back, empty seat or galley. Paying pax should not be displaced by non rev.

Major G Oct 9, 16 9:30 pm

People need to talk to a doctor. There is no medical study supporting this belief that nuts in proximity to someone cause an allergic reaction. If this were true, people would be going into anaphylactic shock in restaurants, supermarkets, etc.

mherdeg Oct 9, 16 9:38 pm

It genuinely hadn't occurred to me -- because I'm very lucky to be allergy-free -- that severe food allergies might significantly restrict your career options. That's a bummer.

I do wonder what your long-term career prospects are like in the "flight attendant" career role if you have a severe nut allergy and have been medically advised that you cannot be near them. That seems really tough.

Loren Pechtel Oct 9, 16 10:07 pm


Originally Posted by Major G (Post 27325634)
People need to talk to a doctor. There is no medical study supporting this belief that nuts in proximity to someone cause an allergic reaction. If this were true, people would be going into anaphylactic shock in restaurants, supermarkets, etc.

Yeah, every serious proximity reaction to food allergies that I've heard of involved something that made the situation worse. (For example, proximity to the offending material being cooked.)

Personally, I have non-threatening but extremely widespread food intolerances, sometimes to some pretty small quantities. I have never reacted to what anyone near me is eating, though. (Wearing is another matter--I have been driven out of the room by perfume more than once.)


Originally Posted by mherdeg (Post 27325681)
It genuinely hadn't occurred to me -- because I'm very lucky to be allergy-free -- that severe food allergies might significantly restrict your career options. That's a bummer.

I do wonder what your long-term career prospects are like in the "flight attendant" career role if you have a severe nut allergy and have been medically advised that you cannot be near them. That seems really tough.

I don't think anyone with a serious allergy to anything they might encounter on the plane has any business being a FA.

Personally, I could never work in a field where I had to entertain clients (there is exactly one dish I can order in a restaurant and not all restaurants will carry it), nor could I work in a field where I had to deal with smokers.

NH_Clark Oct 9, 16 10:11 pm


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?

This.

mythx88 Oct 9, 16 11:53 pm

Its not a disqualifier for anyone having an allergy to be hired for a position. Do UA Express FA's serve nuts in an open container? If not then she wouldn't be dealing with nuts anyways. This is obviously an outlying case. FAs or regular pax notwithstanding.

trooper Oct 10, 16 1:43 am

If you have SUCH a severe nut allergy... (or any seveer allergy to "common" foodstuffs) HOW can you be employed as a FA???

Plane-is-home Oct 10, 16 2:53 am

And that's what's wrong with America. If I can't successfully inconvenience everybody around me or if my own common sense is lacking, I just sue.

joshwex90 Oct 10, 16 3:21 am

OP, how do you know it was a NRSA?


Originally Posted by Major G (Post 27325634)
People need to talk to a doctor. There is no medical study supporting this belief that nuts in proximity to someone cause an allergic reaction. If this were true, people would be going into anaphylactic shock in restaurants, supermarkets, etc.

Uh, that's just not true. I am severely allergic to peanuts, including airborne. And yes, I have reacted to the smell in proximity...

BlueSky72 Oct 10, 16 7:37 am

Imagine a pregnant woman who can become nauseous just smelling certain foods. You've all heard about that (and many of you gave experienced it). That's what it can be like for people with severe nut allergies. Mr BlueSky has them and I've had to make a lot of adjustments in how I handle food. However, while Mr BlueSky will refuse the nuts, he would not expect a seat mate to refrain from enjoying them, even if it makes him somewhat uncomfortable. If this FA has a severe smell reaction, she should have (a) politely asked OP if he'd be willing to refrain due to her allergy, (b) been prepared to accept his "no" if necessary, and (c) either ask to move (if very severe) or put up with it (if less severe). There's a point at which allergy sufferers have a level of personal responsibility for not exposing themselves to known trigger situations.

fastair Oct 10, 16 7:39 am


Originally Posted by Michael D (Post 27324988)
ACAA says each airline is free to make its own peanut policy. What is United's policy?
( http://allergylawproject.com/2015/01...senger-rights/ )

I don't like this NRSA versus 'real' customer debate especially when it comes to safety. It is immaterial except that perhaps the airline should have a protocol for their employees who fly.

If I did have an allergy with which I wasn't comfortable with the person next to me eating my allergen, then I would also be uncomfortable with the person in front, behind, to my other side and the FA walking up the aisle with the allergen in uncover ramekins. I would have also made my situation known to the Gate Attendants and before the flight took off every crew member I met if they weren't proactive and addressed my needs when I took my seat.

It is surprising (sarcasm) that airlines doesn't have an alternative boarding snack for this situation.

/agree with you on all points. I linked UA's policy earlier, it's rather vague. I've boarded plenty of families in advance where they wanted to wipe down the traytable area and other areas around their seats for any possible residue. Once onboard, I don't know what the flight attendants do once notified, it would seem that most of the time, the people notify the crew in advance. In the case of an NRSA who likely wasn't assigned a seat until after boarding had commenced, it becomes a bit more complicated, as it did in the OP's situation. But once onboard, be it ANY passenger, no matter what they paid to sit it the seat, the same safety rules should apply equally. Yes, NRSA get's last meal choice, but they don't need to be the last person off in an evacuation, don't have to turn off their electronic devices earlier, don't have to remain seated when the seatbelt sign is off, they can bring a properly documented emotional support animal on, can request mobility assistance...things for the safety of everyone, including themselves only, apply equally to all.

Artpen100 Oct 10, 16 8:29 am

Per the UA website policy: "For operational reasons, we cannot remove any onboard products based on individual customer requests, and we do not offer nut-free buffer zones on our aircraft. Since we cannot guarantee nut-free flights, we encourage customers to review any health concerns with their physicians prior to flying."

Seems pretty reasonable to me. I don't want to hurt someone with an allergy, but if someone is going to have a severe medical reaction or die if exposed to any kind of nut on a plane, they should talk to their doctor and probably not fly. They should know that it is not possible to be completely peanut free. It is a known risk that there may be a stray peanut in the seatback or someone may open a pack of trail mix they bought in the airport. It would be irrational for someone with an allergy that severe to take that risk. Of course, people do irrational things all the time.

Of course, if I had been treated rudely by airline staff, that is a separate matter, and I would probably file a complaint, and maybe even ask for compensation, especially if flying in paid business or first. I don't file many complaints, but when I have, I stick to the facts, and have usually gotten some compensation (miles, which I use, so is fine with me).

JVPhoto Oct 10, 16 8:29 am

Is there something in all of them that can cause you to be allergic to all nuts?

tht Oct 10, 16 8:59 am

I was on an SQ flight a long time ago, they announced that they had a passenger who was severally allergic to peanuts onboard. They then announced that none would be served and asked all passenger to not open them if they had brought their own on the plane.

Coskigirl Oct 10, 16 9:02 am


Originally Posted by JVPhoto (Post 27327071)
Is there something in all of them that can cause you to be allergic to all nuts?

She probably has a tree nut allergy rather than or in addition to a peanut allergy.

https://www.foodallergy.org/allergens/tree-nut-allergy

That being said, I don't think she was out of line to request he abstain, however, she could have done it in a much more polite way which likely would have garnered a more sympathetic response from the OP.

Bonehead Oct 10, 16 9:06 am


Originally Posted by JVPhoto (Post 27327071)
Is there something in all of them that can cause you to be allergic to all nuts?

My nephew is allergic to all nuts.

dmurphynj Oct 10, 16 10:31 am


Originally Posted by Coskigirl (Post 27327189)
That being said, I don't think she was out of line to request he abstain, however, she could have done it in a much more polite way which likely would have garnered a more sympathetic response from the OP.

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.

milepig Oct 10, 16 10:42 am


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 get it, but the question remains as to whether an FA with an allergy so severe would be able to work an airplane cabin. Even if the airline were to ban nuts and passenger could have nuts in their carryon.

tealeaf99 Oct 10, 16 10:42 am


Originally Posted by tht (Post 27327178)
I was on an SQ flight a long time ago, they announced that they had a passenger who was severally allergic to peanuts onboard. They then announced that none would be served and asked all passenger to not open them if they had brought their own on the plane.

I had this announcement once on a UA flight. The flight was one or two years ago.

Bonehead Oct 10, 16 10:43 am


Originally Posted by dmurphynj (Post 27327553)
...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.

Yes. People die from these allergies.

pseudoswede Oct 10, 16 11:34 am

Miss Swede has allergies to peanuts and tree nuts (except almonds) along with dairy, eggs, and sesame. When we board an aircraft, we immediately inform the purser that there is someone on-board with a peanut allergy. UA is usually very accommodating and will make an announcement in the vicinity of our seats. BA and SK are happy to make a full-plane announcement.

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.

The NRSA, in this case, should've informed the purser immediately upon boarding.

findark Oct 10, 16 11:51 am


Originally Posted by pseudoswede (Post 27327884)
The NRSA, in this case, should've informed the purser immediately upon boarding.

This. Especially since, as an NRSA, she should know there are going to be nuts served. Something doesn't add up here.


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