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Man pulled off of overbooked flight UA3411 (ORD-SDF) 9 Apr 2017 {Settlement reached}

Man pulled off of overbooked flight UA3411 (ORD-SDF) 9 Apr 2017 {Settlement reached}

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Old Apr 13, 18, 1:33 pm   -   Wikipost
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Statement from United Airlines Regarding Resolution with Dr. David Dao - released 27 April 2017
CHICAGO, April 27, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- We are pleased to report that United and Dr. Dao have reached an amicable resolution of the unfortunate incident that occurred aboard flight 3411. We look forward to implementing the improvements we have announced, which will put our customers at the center of everything we do.
DOT findings related to the UA3411 9 April 2017 IDB incident 12 May 2017

What facts do we know?
  • UA3411, operated by Republic Airways, ORD-SDF on Sunday, April 9, 2017. UA3411 was the second to last flight to SDF for United. AA3509 and UA4771 were the two remaining departures for the day. Also, AA and DL had connecting options providing for same-day arrival in SDF.
  • After the flight was fully boarded, United determined four seats were needed to accommodate crew to SDF for a flight on Monday.
  • United solicited volunteers for VDB. (BUT stopped at $800 in UA$s, not cash). Chose not to go to the levels such as 1350 that airlines have been known to go even in case of weather impacted disruption)
  • After receiving no volunteers for $800 vouchers, a passenger volunteered for $1,600 and was "laughed at" and refused, United determined four passengers to be removed from the flight.
  • One passenger refused and Chicago Aviation Security Officers were called to forcibly remove the passenger.
  • The passenger hit the armrest in the aisle and received a concussion, a broken nose, a bloodied lip, and the loss of two teeth.
  • After being removed from the plane, the passenger re-boarded saying "I need to go home" repeatedly, before being removed again.
  • United spokesman Jonathan Guerin said the flight was sold out — but not oversold. Instead, United and regional affiliate Republic Airlines – the unit that operated Flight 3411 – decided they had to remove four passengers from the flight to accommodate crewmembers who were needed in Louisville the next day for a “downline connection.”

United Express Flight 3411 Review and Action Report - released 27 April 2017

Videos

Internal Communication by Oscar Munoz
Oscar Munoz sent an internal communication to UA employees (sources: View From The Wing, Chicago Tribune):
Dear Team,

Like you, I was upset to see and hear about what happened last night aboard United Express Flight 3411 headed from Chicago to Louisville. While the facts and circumstances are still evolving, especially with respect to why this customer defied Chicago Aviation Security Officers the way he did, to give you a clearer picture of what transpired, I've included below a recap from the preliminary reports filed by our employees.

As you will read, this situation was unfortunately compounded when one of the passengers we politely asked to deplane refused and it became necessary to contact Chicago Aviation Security Officers to help. Our employees followed established procedures for dealing with situations like this. While I deeply regret this situation arose, I also emphatically stand behind all of you, and I want to commend you for continuing to go above and beyond to ensure we fly right.

I do, however, believe there are lessons we can learn from this experience, and we are taking a close look at the circumstances surrounding this incident. Treating our customers and each other with respect and dignity is at the core of who we are, and we must always remember this no matter how challenging the situation.

Oscar

Summary of Flight 3411
  • On Sunday, April 9, after United Express Flight 3411 was fully boarded, United's gate agents were approached by crewmembers that were told they needed to board the flight.
  • We sought volunteers and then followed our involuntary denial of boarding process (including offering up to $1,000 in compensation) and when we approached one of these passengers to explain apologetically that he was being denied boarding, he raised his voice and refused to comply with crew member instructions.
  • He was approached a few more times after that in order to gain his compliance to come off the aircraft, and each time he refused and became more and more disruptive and belligerent.
  • Our agents were left with no choice but to call Chicago Aviation Security Officers to assist in removing the customer from the flight. He repeatedly declined to leave.
  • Chicago Aviation Security Officers were unable to gain his cooperation and physically removed him from the flight as he continued to resist - running back onto the aircraft in defiance of both our crew and security officials.
Email sent to all employees at 2:08PM on Tuesday, April 11.
Dear Team,

The truly horrific event that occurred on this flight has elicited many responses from all of us: outrage, anger, disappointment. I share all of those sentiments, and one above all: my deepest apologies for what happened. Like you, I continue to be disturbed by what happened on this flight and I deeply apologize to the customer forcibly removed and to all the customers aboard. No one should ever be mistreated this way.

I want you to know that we take full responsibility and we will work to make it right.

It’s never too late to do the right thing. I have committed to our customers and our employees that we are going to fix what’s broken so this never happens again. This will include a thorough review of crew movement, our policies for incentivizing volunteers in these situations, how we handle oversold situations and an examination of how we partner with airport authorities and local law enforcement. We’ll communicate the results of our review by April 30th.

I promise you we will do better.

Sincerely,

Oscar
Statement to customers - 27 April 2017
Each flight you take with us represents an important promise we make to you, our customer. It's not simply that we make sure you reach your destination safely and on time, but also that you will be treated with the highest level of service and the deepest sense of dignity and respect.

Earlier this month, we broke that trust when a passenger was forcibly removed from one of our planes. We can never say we are sorry enough for what occurred, but we also know meaningful actions will speak louder than words.

For the past several weeks, we have been urgently working to answer two questions: How did this happen, and how can we do our best to ensure this never happens again?

It happened because our corporate policies were placed ahead of our shared values. Our procedures got in the way of our employees doing what they know is right.

Fixing that problem starts now with changing how we fly, serve and respect our customers. This is a turning point for all of us here at United – and as CEO, it's my responsibility to make sure that we learn from this experience and redouble our efforts to put our customers at the center of everything we do.

That’s why we announced that we will no longer ask law enforcement to remove customers from a flight and customers will not be required to give up their seat once on board – except in matters of safety or security.

We also know that despite our best efforts, when things don’t go the way they should, we need to be there for you to make things right. There are several new ways we’re going to do just that.

We will increase incentives for voluntary rebooking up to $10,000 and will be eliminating the red tape on permanently lost bags with a new "no-questions-asked" $1,500 reimbursement policy. We will also be rolling out a new app for our employees that will enable them to provide on-the-spot goodwill gestures in the form of miles, travel credit and other amenities when your experience with us misses the mark. You can learn more about these commitments and many other changes at hub.united.com.

While these actions are important, I have found myself reflecting more broadly on the role we play and the responsibilities we have to you and the communities we serve.

I believe we must go further in redefining what United's corporate citizenship looks like in our society. If our chief good as a company is only getting you to and from your destination, that would show a lack of moral imagination on our part. You can and ought to expect more from us, and we intend to live up to those higher expectations in the way we embody social responsibility and civic leadership everywhere we operate. I hope you will see that pledge express itself in our actions going forward, of which these initial, though important, changes are merely a first step.

Our goal should be nothing less than to make you truly proud to say, "I fly United."

Ultimately, the measure of our success is your satisfaction and the past several weeks have moved us to go further than ever before in elevating your experience with us. I know our 87,000 employees have taken this message to heart, and they are as energized as ever to fulfill our promise to serve you better with each flight and earn the trust you’ve given us.

We are working harder than ever for the privilege to serve you and I know we will be stronger, better and the customer-focused airline you expect and deserve.

With Great Gratitude,

Oscar Munoz
CEO
United Airlines
Aftermath
Poll: Your Opinion of United Airlines Reference Material

UA's Customer Commitment says:
Occasionally we may not be able to provide you with a seat on a specific flight, even if you hold a ticket, have checked in, are present to board on time, and comply with other requirements. This is called an oversale, and occurs when restrictions apply to operating a particular flight safely (such as aircraft weight limits); when we have to substitute a smaller aircraft in place of a larger aircraft that was originally scheduled; or if more customers have checked in and are prepared to board than we have available seats.

If your flight is in an oversale situation, you will not be denied a seat until we first ask for volunteers willing to give up their confirmed seats. If there are not enough volunteers, we will deny boarding to passengers in accordance with our written policy on boarding priority. If you are involuntarily denied boarding and have complied with our check-in and other applicable rules, we will give you a written statement that describes your rights and explains how we determine boarding priority for an oversold flight. You will generally be entitled to compensation and transportation on an alternate flight.

We make complete rules for the payment of compensation, as well as our policy about boarding priorities, available at airports we serve. We will follow these rules to ensure you are treated fairly. Please be aware that you may be denied boarding without compensation if you do not check in on time or do not meet certain other requirements, or if we offer you alternative transportation that is planned to arrive at your destination or first stopover no later than one hour after the planned arrival time of your original flight.
CoC is here: https://www.united.com/web/en-US/con...-carriage.aspx
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:09 pm
  #4501  
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Originally Posted by raehl311 View Post
I don't think he was randomly selected. He volunteered, they came back with his new flights, he didn't like them, he changed his mind, but by then he was no longer a ticketed passenger, and the GA just went with him because his seat had already been reassigned anyway.
He remained a ticketed passenger even while and after being forcibly removed by the government enforcers acting as UA agents in this Sunday incident at ORD.

VDB isn't applicable unless and until the the terms of the VDB are voluntarily accepted in full by the person who was seeking to volunteer to be offloaded from the originally booked and ticketed flights.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:10 pm
  #4502  
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Originally Posted by tom911 View Post
All the more reason to release the police report.
Better yet, release the tapes from the call the GA or other UA/UX employee placed to summon the police as well as the response by the dispatcher sending cops to the gate. I assume that these are all recorded just like 911 calls are recorded.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:11 pm
  #4503  
 
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Originally Posted by SeaHawg View Post
Agree on the speed of the escalation.

Furthermore, did you find any videos where the person being escorted away was a senior citizen?
Ya, the first one I quoted with the cops in Smokey Bear hats (
) was an old lady that eventually gets "sternly" lead off the plane. The cops clearly are trained in the force techniques they are using.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:16 pm
  #4504  
 
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Press Conference from Dao's attorneys

Just saw this on WGN's website:

Tomorrow the Chicago city council’s aviation committee will also be making sure this doesn’t happen again. 23 Ward Alderman Mike Zalewski called the meeting.

The city council does not have a lot of power in terms of legislation but Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky says she plans to introduce a bill that would stop airlines from bumping passengers on overbooked flights.

Also tomorrow, Dr. Dao's personal injury attorneys will be holding a press conference.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:22 pm
  #4505  
 
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Originally Posted by raehl311 View Post
Serious. He was asked to leave and refused. That's criminal. He was asked to leave by law enforcement and refused. Criminal again. Had he left when asked in either of those cases everything would have been fine.

So? A property owner doesn't need any reason to demand that someone leaves their property.
.
I think you are confusing private property and public carrier with legally paid passage rights.

You are also assuming incorrectly that one is criminal for not obeying illegal instructions from LEO.

Again, a ticket holder on public carrier is not same as being on someone's private property.

Anyway, I still think you are just trolling for fun.

No one is that misinformed/misguided after seeing reaction of billion plus people all over the world. Do you really think if there was even iota of ground for UA to cling to, lawyers for UA would have allowed Munoz to accept liability so openly on public television?
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:23 pm
  #4506  
 
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Originally Posted by raehl311 View Post
Serious. He was asked to leave and refused. That's criminal. He was asked to leave by law enforcement and refused. Criminal again.
Really? Would you like to point to a particular Illinois or federal statute to back this claim up?

Originally Posted by raehl311 View Post
So? A property owner doesn't need any reason to demand that someone leaves their property.
Yet again, do you have a source for this very general claim, given that the passenger entered into a contract with United and paid them for the use of their property?

(Hint: there is a thread on Flyertalk with over 4000 posts where this exact issue has been discussed to some lengths. Most posters seem to acknowledge that the matter is a tad more subtle than you suggest.)
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:23 pm
  #4507  
 
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Originally Posted by raehl311 View Post
Serious. He was asked to leave and refused. That's criminal. He was asked to leave by law enforcement and refused. Criminal again. Had he left when asked in either of those cases everything would have been fine.



So? A property owner doesn't need any reason to demand that someone leaves their property.


Raehl, I would urge you to consider the possibility that the the legality of the passenger's continued presence on the plane is a little more complicated than you appreciate. A license permitting a person to be present on another's property that is paired with valuable considerations generally (rather than generally, I should say in several jurissictions) is not terminable at will, assuming full compliance with the conditions of the license, unless the terms of license provide it is terminable at will.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:24 pm
  #4508  
 
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Originally Posted by deskover54 View Post
Overbooking happens in other industries so your statement is incorrect. Hotels would be one example.
Which is why I said "Almost nowhere else" because I'm aware that hotels do it.

I'm not buying the cheaper fares argument; I'd need to see hard proof (from a disinterested third-party source that evaluates statistics; not from an airline with a vested interest in keeping it).

Strictly from a passenger viewpoint, overbooking is horrible.

As for this:
Originally Posted by RumPatrol View Post
The reason United had to shoehorn these crew members on to this flight, and only this flight, was because if they didn't they would probably have to delay or cancel the flight they were en route to crew. It happens every single day on every single airline. Displace 4 passengers or displace an entire plane full of them? Math isn't too hard on which you pick.
Again, your personnel problems, airlines, should not be my problem as a customer. If I pay money for a service, I expect that service. In the case of an airline, the *only* exceptions to that rule would be: weather-related, health emergency of the captain/co-pilot, or mechanical issues.

I don't care about your profit (and they're making money; don't kid yourself) and I don't care about your personnel problems. I should not, if I paid for your service, be asked to voluntarily deplane due to your greed or incompetence, or be asked to take a voucher if I don't want to do so, or as some suggested, told I should take the voucher and drive. No. I choose to fly for a reason.

In return, I'm a model passenger. I don't cause trouble; I don't overpack and I don't hassle the staff. I'm polite and try to be kind.

All I want is what I'm entitled to when purchasing your service and that is, that service. For those ready to jump in about the Carrier Code or whatever they call it, how about we just use common sense.

I'm even more angry at our government that I am at United. They've allowed the corporations to do this to us.

At airports, instead of profiling like Israel does (and quite well too), we all must go through the charade of TSA, lest we offend someone by profiling. We're stuffed into smaller and smaller seats (how tall men or men with shoulders fly I do not know) and airplanes are stuffed to the gills. No wonder people are fed up. And now we're supposed to just roll over because Joe Authority says we should do something? No.

That guy was brave. He acted instead of rolling over and taking it. I wish I had his guts.

Last edited by WineCountryUA; Apr 12, 17 at 10:49 pm Reason: repaired quote
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:24 pm
  #4509  
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Originally Posted by swampcritter View Post

I keep thinking, what if I were booked on the flight the next morning, and I learned it had been cancelled because of a single person not following instructions. What would I think? Would I be a happy customer? Or would I think, why can one person keep me from flying?
And herein lies the problem. You see it only as a single person not following instructions. The fact that those instructions were not lawful? The fact that the person didn't need to follow the instructions?

Perhaps you'd be at the airport the next morning thinking 'thank goodness my 13 year old child wasn't off loaded against their will' (yes, we know minors aren't supposed to be off loaded, but if UA breaks the rules in one area, what's to say they wouldn't off-load a minor in contravention of the rules?)
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:29 pm
  #4510  
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Originally Posted by raehl311 View Post
That's ridiculous.

Buy a movie ticket and see if you don't get kicked out for talking on your phone during the movie. Or filming. Or talking a lot.

Nowhere, including airplanes, does buying a ticket preclude the property owner from kicking you out.
In plenty of places, buying a ticket does preclude the property owner from unlawfully kicking out ticket holders who were hitherto acting in compliance with the laws of the area and the contract applicable to the ticket and its holder/user.

UA -- inclusive of UA's "enforcers" -- messed up here, and it's going to end up costing UA money because, even as a property owner selling access, UA doesn't have carte blanche in how they act against people with a lawful presence on the property at the time of an actionable incident. Corporatist-come-statist power apologist ideologues aren't running the entire domestic show, and it's going to show in the passenger's financial circumstances after UA pays up for what it -- including the government henchmen acting under UA agency -- did to this passenger.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:29 pm
  #4511  
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Originally Posted by BearX220 View Post
If the airlines didn't see advantage and profit in this power imbalance, they'd change it.

In an oligopoly, customer satisfaction matters a lot less. Perhaps a popular uprising inspired by the Dao case will do some real damage to United Airlines and prove me wrong. But the structure of the marketplace means they have a lot of customers cornered, legally and logistically.
Not necessarily. With few competitors, potential customers are much more likely to know their individual products and how the products and service differ compared to each other. It can certainly pay for a firm to attempt to differentiate its product.

With many competitors, usually at least some of them are very similar to each other. Trying to make your product different or better than what is offered by the pack is less likely to be feasible or profitable, partly because consumers simply cannot be well informed about whatever variety of products might be available and which companies are selling which of these products.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:29 pm
  #4512  
 
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Originally Posted by kevindavis338 View Post
Here is what I saw on Facebook, so I don't know if it is true or not.

1. No one at United got mad.

2. They (crew) were not standby, they were a "must ride". (Meaning that they had to get to that destination to operate a flight while maintaining FAA regulations due to weather impacting operations)

3. Whenever you purchase a ticket, you are agreeing to abide by the passenger agreements and CFRs.

4. He wasn't randomly chosen, the computer system used goes by who paid the cheapest ticket, whether or not luggage was checked, status, boarding priority, etc.

5. The flight wasn't originally oversold until the inbound crew encountered a missed connect due to weather impacting operations and legality issues which is why these 4 inflight personnels had to get onto this particular flight to avoid a cancellation of the morning flight as this particular flight from Chicago only flies once at 3pm.

6. He was asked numerous times to leave the aircraft by United officials, he leaves, changes his mind then decides to run past the gate agents back to the aircraft. At this point, he is classified as non-compliant and a security issue which is why law enforcement was called. This is post 9/11. That's a federal offense, you don't run onto an aircraft after being removed. Period. Point. Blank. Once the law gets involved, it is no longer United. That's Chicago O'hare Int'l Airport and Chicago PD. They told him numerous times to exit, nicely, and he didn't comply so there you have it.
adding more gas to the fire but I got a text with similar info stating united solicited volunteers, this "dr" and his wife willingly got off the plane and was booked a hotel & a flight for the next day but then changed their mind & ran back on the plane, were asked to leave several times and that's when the airport police were called.Videos didn't start rolling till this point.

I've seen a video from right behind his seat & the "dr" was on his phone with someone, still refusing to leave till things got heated and ugly.

before I get roasted, I'm a little dubious and not putting all my eggs in one basket like some are doing on the other side of this issue. plus who says whats in the wiki is 100% correct, a lot of the info is conflicting.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:38 pm
  #4513  
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Moderator Reminder

Once again want to remind all,
While you can disagree with an opinion, the holder of that opinion has the same right to their opinion as you have to yours. We request all to respect that and disagree / discuss their point of views without getting overly personally and without attacking the other poster(s). This is explicitly stated as a requirement in FT Rule 12.

This incident as touch a nerve for many and many posters are passionate about the opinions / concerns but let’s try to have a civil / respectful discussion of this topic.

Another issue is the subject of Dr Dao’s past. He has become a “public figure” (not by his choice) and his past has also become widely known and public. There is no FT rule prohibiting references to his past but as with any discussion it needs to be relevant, on topic, not overly repetitive with certain sense of this accidental “public figure.” Additionally let’s state away from unsubstantiated rumors.

Let continue this discussion in a way when we look back on it, we can be proud of how we handled ourselves.

WineCountryUA
UA coModerator
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:38 pm
  #4514  
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Originally Posted by raehl311 View Post
He was asked to leave and refused. That's criminal. He was asked to leave by law enforcement and refused. Criminal again.
It really is not that simple. If it were as simple as indicated above, good luck finding a reputable prosecutor to go after this UA passenger for this incident at ORD. And better luck finding a jury willing to convict this UA passenger for this incident at UA.

The above post is parroting a line that is nothing but character assassination groundwork to blame the victim of this UA incident at ORD for what transpired.
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Old Apr 12, 17, 10:38 pm
  #4515  
 
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Originally Posted by TBonz View Post
Which is why I said "Almost nowhere else" because I'm aware that hotels do it.
Plus as far as I'm aware, hotels don't drag you out of the shower naked after having checked you in.
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