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Couple with Positive COVID Pre-Flight Test Arrested Upon Arriving at LIH Flying UA

Couple with Positive COVID Pre-Flight Test Arrested Upon Arriving at LIH Flying UA

Old Dec 2, 20, 12:26 pm
  #1  
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Couple with Positive COVID Pre-Flight Test Arrested Upon Arriving at LIH Flying UA

A couple was arrested in Hawaii on Sunday when they flew SFO-LIH and knew they were COVID positive. They were also traveling with a child.

They flew on UA 1111.

When they arrived off of UA 1111 they were charged with endangering other passengers with death. They were released after paying $1,000 bond.

https://www.kron4.com/news/bay-area/couple-with-coronavirus-boarded-sfo-flight-to-hawaii-arrested/amp/

Many other passengers on UA1111 now have to quarantine at their expense and aren't permitted to fly off Kauai for 14 days.

If I was one of them, I'd probably sue the infected couple for damages for ruining my vacation.
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Last edited by WineCountryUA; Dec 2, 20 at 1:09 pm Reason: merging consecutive posts by the same member
Weatherboy is offline  
Old Dec 2, 20, 12:35 pm
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How did UA find out?

Regardless, I hope they are prosecuted to the fullest extent and also sued by the other passengers .... this is despicable.
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Old Dec 2, 20, 12:47 pm
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I haven't looked too much into the testing being done by UA, but weren't they doing rapid tests prior to getting on the flights? The article also doesn't really state much info, how did officials find out?
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Old Dec 2, 20, 12:52 pm
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As well being subjected to maximum criminal and civil action, I hope United and other airlines enact bans for life.
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Old Dec 2, 20, 12:55 pm
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Considering how many people were dry-coughing throughout my EWR-LAX flight on Monday, I am pleased to see that there is at least some kind of punitive action for flying while infectious. Some form of pre-flight testing should be mandatory for all flights, and those who are positive should be penalized for willfully endangering others. Results can be had in 20 minutes, and it could easily be added as another fee attached to the airfare, if necessary. It will be interesting to see how this holds up in court.
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Old Dec 2, 20, 1:04 pm
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I would hope UA found out via this process:

Used Color or GoHealth testing - get positive test - reported to Health Authorities - who then inform UA. Maybe the timing didn't allow UA to find out in time.
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Old Dec 2, 20, 2:10 pm
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This would present a good case study opportunity to assess in flight transmission risk.

Hope they are punished appropriately, including not being permitted to fly UA again. I certainly don't want them on my flight!
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Old Dec 2, 20, 2:42 pm
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Originally Posted by Weatherboy View Post
A couple was arrested in Hawaii on Sunday when they flew SFO-LIH and knew they were COVID positive. They were also traveling with a child.

They flew on UA 1111.

When they arrived off of UA 1111 they were charged with endangering other passengers with death. They were released after paying $1,000 bond.
The article isn't really clear where they got arrested (didn't watch the video): were they arrested whilst still in SFO, after boarding, or in Hawaii?

"A Hawaii couple was arrested this week after boarding a flight despite having tested positive for COVID-19."
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Old Dec 2, 20, 3:51 pm
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a few more details starting to hit the web. I haven't flown since February, but was thinking that UA was going to have some sort of info right at the gate prior to boarding, but this article doesn't seem to indicate that. Has anyone here taken the test prior to getting on a flight to Hawaii?

https://www.foxnews.com/travel/coupl...oarding-flight
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Old Dec 2, 20, 4:13 pm
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Originally Posted by narvik View Post
The article isn't really clear where they got arrested (didn't watch the video): were they arrested whilst still in SFO, after boarding, or in Hawaii?

"A Hawaii couple was arrested this week after boarding a flight despite having tested positive for COVID-19."
They were arrested after landing at Lihue.
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Old Dec 2, 20, 4:27 pm
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Maybe UA can give them a rowboat and 2 oars to find their way back to California.

They should be put on the federal no fly list for at least 10 years. I don't see that happening until after January 20th, though.
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Old Dec 2, 20, 4:35 pm
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Originally Posted by fumje View Post
This would present a good case study opportunity to assess in flight transmission risk.

Hope they are punished appropriately, including not being permitted to fly UA again. I certainly don't want them on my flight!
It's a good case study in one direction. There's a belief that the ability to spread varies widely (some people are "superspreaders" and some aren't), and we don't know yet how to identify them (it doesn't appear to be tied to symptoms showing etc). So if there are other positives traced to these 2 it does show that it's possible, but if there aren't that doesn't prove anything; these 2 might just not be heavy spreaders.

And of course, airlines haven't been particularly helpful in tracing cases, because touting the completely bogus "44 cases worldwide" is valuable to them. Multiple people have reported testing positive a few days after flying, contacting the airline, and being dismissed without any further tracing (including one who had a friend on another PNR sitting nearby, so knows they weren't contacted). In this case hopefully authorities in Hawaii will be doing focused followup.

And yes, hopefully the affected folks are being given info so they can demand reimbursement for their costs (and sue if not paid immediately). I see they are Hawaii residents, probably just wanted to get home but no excuse. Similar to the Biogen employee who fled knowing she was symptomatic after that extremely ill-advised company conference.
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Old Dec 2, 20, 5:12 pm
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Haven't flown since before the start of the pandemic, so I am very uninformed about how things work at airports these days. Also very uninformed about the special process involving testing prior to flying to Hawaii.

That being said, I read a SFGate article today about this couple (it appears the article is the one mentioned in the Fox News article above). It seems they tested positive at the SFO test center and were told to isolate, but instead the couple boarded the flight. Does United verify test status before boarding? I would think that an airport test center would be in contact with the airlines, especially when there is a positive result. From the SFGate article:
The flight originated at San Francisco International Airport where the pair both tested positive for COVID-19. They were told by the Quarantine Station at the airport to isolate and not to board a plane bound for Kauai, but they did anyway.

After the plane landed at the Lihue Airport, the pair were identified and apprehended by police.
Link to SFGate article: https://www.sfgate.com/travel/articl...e-15769548.php
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Old Dec 2, 20, 5:26 pm
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Ban for life. So selfish.
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Old Dec 2, 20, 5:35 pm
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Originally Posted by scottpenderson View Post
It seems they tested positive at the SFO test center and were told to isolate, but instead the couple boarded the flight. Does United verify test status before boarding?
Testing is optional, so either United didn't ask, or they lied and said they weren't tested.

Seems like United found out while the flight was en route. They should have isolated the passengers in a restroom for the remainder of the flight
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