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United Airlines investigation on dragged passenger: "Many things went wrong that day"

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nature boy

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Jan 16, 2006
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New news, new thread

United dragging report: ‘Our review shows that many things went wrong that day’

In a new report, United Airlines admits several mistakes were made before, during and after a man was violently dragged off a flight earlier this month, including calling in law enforcement to resolve an incident that was neither a safety nor security issue.

In the report, released Thursday, the airline says it had allowed internal policies to distract from the need to treat passengers with dignity and respect and it outlines what the company intends to do to prevent a repeat of the incident.

“This is a turning point for all of us at United and it signals a culture shift toward becoming a better, more customer-focused airline,” CEO Oscar Munoz said in a statement that accompanied the release of the report on the April 9 incident at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. “Our customers should be at the center of everything we do and these changes are just the beginning of how we will earn back their trust.”

With the report, Munoz makes good on a public promise he made several days after David Dao, 69, was dragged out of his seat, down the aisle and off the plane after he refused to give up his seat for off-duty crew. Other passengers captured the incident on their phones and shared video that has been viewed millions of times worldwide and sparked international outrage.

Lawyers representing Dao said he suffered a concussion, broken nose and two missing teeth, among other injuries. Four aviation security officers involved in the incident have been placed on leave while the investigation continues.

“United Airlines takes full responsibility for what happened,” reads the report’s introduction. “The intention of this report is to communicate concrete and meaningful actions that will avoid putting our customers, employees and partners in impossible situations.”

The report lays out five ways in which United says it failed both its passengers and employees. In addition to unnecessarily summoning law enforcement, the airline should not have tried to find space on the flight for crew members at the last minute. It also should have offered more compensation or more transportation options in order to entice customers to give up their seats voluntarily, but it acknowledged that agents did not have the authority to make such decisions. Finally, the report said the airline has not provide regular training for employees on how to deal with “denied boarding situations.”

“Our review shows that many things went wrong that day, but the headline is clear: Our policies got in the way of our values and procedures interfered in doing what’s right,” Munoz said.

The report, which outlines 10 changes the airline is making to prevent a repeat of the incident, is the most detailed account yet of the events that led to Dao’s removal from Flight 3411,
...

That moment, captured on video by other passengers aboard the flight, showed Dao yelling as he is pulled from his seat and then dragged down the aisle of the plane.

But United is promising change.

Under the airline’s new customer-first policy, travelers who voluntarily give up their seats will be eligible to receive up to $10,000 in travel certificates. United employees will be given new authority to find creative solutions to get bumped passengers to their final destinations — even if it means booking them on another airline or sending them to another airport.

In addition to increasing the compensation for passengers who voluntarily give up their seats, the airline will create an automated system to identify passengers willing to give up their seats and allow them to set the level of compensation they would be willing to accept. Starting in August, the airline also will offer additional training for front-line staff and later this year will roll out an app that will allow employees to immediately compensate customers when a service issue arises. It also will create a “customer solutions team” charged with finding ways to get displaced passengers where they need to go.

Even though United officials say only a small percentage of passengers are involuntarily bumped from the airline’s flights, they said they will reduce overbooking on those flights where volunteers are less likely to come forward. Overbooking is not illegal, but has drawn new scrutiny from members of Congress following the airline’s treatment of Dao.

Full report: https://hub.united.com/united-review-action-report-2380196105.html

Mod edit:

He settled.

 

BocoDragon

or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Realize This Assgrab is Delicious
Dec 5, 2005
51,668
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Nothing surprising here. With a massive scandal like this, of course United would eventually be forced to get on their knees and make a big show of changing their tune.
 

GreekWolf

Member
Sep 16, 2005
6,044
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1,430
What they did was inexcusable, but at least they are making some kind of attempt to change. I still don't trust them but will give a modicum of credit.

Meanwhile, you've got AA and Delta who almost never publically apologize for anything but will be more than happy to pay you shush money.
 

Kordelle

Member
Mar 30, 2014
715
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We flew with United from Germany to LAX this April. They messed our bags and finally managed to give them back to us after 5 days...
 

SuperBowser

Member
Oct 28, 2009
1,165
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Personally, I think nothing went wrong that day. United Airlines followed the mechanisms of their policy and treated that passenger exactly as intended. That's what was most frightening about the CEO's response.

Really? 10k in free flights isn't good enough?

Depends if there's a time limit. But I'd be down for some 1st class flights.
 

RBH

Member
Apr 19, 2007
54,203
1
1,395
I'll continue to pay the extra money to fly Delta or SW whenever possible instead of United or AA.
 

navii

My fantasy is that my girlfriend was actually a young high school girl.
Mar 23, 2007
2,153
352
1,425
Sydney Australia
i40.tinypic.com
Customer focused.... Customer at the centre / heart of everything we do... They are just NOW getting on this corp-speak bullshit bandwagon?

Ive experienced this myself, you are at the centre as long as you do everything they say.
 

dan2026

Member
Jul 10, 2012
11,216
1
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They brutalised an old man and dragged him barely conscious from their aircraft.

Let that sink in for a moment.
 

Goro Majima

Kitty Genovese Member
Sep 2, 2007
31,629
4,789
1,470
I can't believe that they couldn't book you on another airline or send you to another local airport if you were unvoluntarily deboarded before. Like how isn't it a regulation that if you're removed as a ticketed passenger (that wasn't on standby) that they have to make a good faith effort to get you to your destination while minimizing delay?

Also I guarantee you can find all kinds of United PR propaganda about putting the customer first before this incident. I mostly like the corrective action and acknowledgement that they fucked up - even if it took a public outcry and a lawsuit because they weren't anywhere this in the immediate aftermath.
 

correojon

Member
Jul 25, 2014
2,789
1
455
The off duty staff should have waited. Paying customers come first.

Yup, all this new talk about "customers first", compensations and new customer-oriented teams yet they can´t understand that if a customer pays you for something, your utmost priority should be to just give it to them.
 

Mr. Giggles

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Dec 23, 2014
6,733
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Personally, I think nothing went wrong that day. United Airlines followed the mechanisms of their policy and treated that passenger exactly as intended. That's what was most frightening about the CEO's response.

Absolutely.

If they weren't caught on film they would have pushed the "he was a threat / he was belligerent" angle hard and if you recall in the first internal memo sent by the CEO this was the excuse.

Boycotts and a tumbling stock later they come clean.

If you can avoid flying with this airline, please do so
 

-shadow-

Member
Sep 22, 2015
5,497
3
390
He ended up with a concussion, broken nose, two missing teeth and more? I hope the guy (or lawyers) drags the company through the court house all the way to to the bitter end and not just settle for a certain amount of money out of court. Guy can have lasting phycological damage from the incident.
 

TK-421

Member
Jun 13, 2015
397
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320
Death Star
Personally, I think nothing went wrong that day. United Airlines followed the mechanisms of their policy and treated that passenger exactly as intended. That's what was most frightening about the CEO's response.

Agreed. This was business as usual until they got caught.
 
May 31, 2008
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Will airlines now institute a sensible policy of leaving a few seats open for employees to occupy, if necessary, instead of overlooking and then flexing its muscle against unsuspecting passengers? Because United didn't do anything that was outside its legal scope, from what I can tell, which is perhaps the most disturbing part of this.
 

The Lamp

Member
Nov 6, 2010
17,178
2
0
We flew with United from Germany to LAX this April. They messed our bags and finally managed to give them back to us after 5 days...

So? That kind of garbage happens with all of the airline networks. Delta''s french partner lost my friends bag including important medication during his 1 week vacation and never returned it to him nor compensated him until he came back to the US, was ignored by customer support, and had to email the CEO to get a voucher.

I never check bags in anymore.
 

FunkyMunkey

Banned
Aug 26, 2006
6,937
0
0
that ceo can go fuck himself. i was already avoiding united because of other reasons but that debacle made sure i will never ever give them a dollar of my money
 

SlimySnake

Member
Feb 5, 2013
9,446
24,252
1,200
The off duty staff should have waited. Paying customers come first.

Yup, all this new talk about "customers first", compensations and new customer-oriented teams yet they can´t understand that if a customer pays you for something, your utmost priority should be to just give it to them.

From what I understand, the off duty staff had to catch this flight because they were supposed to actually fly a plane out of their destination city. if they didnt get on this flight, hundreds of customers on the other flight would have been stranded on the airport.

So united chose to bump four passengers to make sure the 100+ passengers on the other plane had pilots and crew who could fly them out of there.
 

Punchy4486

Banned
Jan 12, 2009
1,369
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Illinois
Was really hoping all this shit would drop ticket prices a bit for this summer since I have an international wedding, but if anything they've only gone up. :(
 
Sep 3, 2015
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Give that man all the money ya got. First for getting dragged out and then dragged through the mud on the internet by the "he's no angel" idiots.

Then change the stupid overbooking shit.
 
May 17, 2010
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"$10,000"

WELL DAMN, I'D GIVE UP A SE-

"In travel certificates"

bruh.

"Under the airline’s new customer-first policy, travelers who voluntarily give up their seats will be eligible to receive up to $10,000 in travel certificates."

The important part here is "up to". They ain't giving out $10k in travel certificates ever.
 

gutter_trash

Banned
Feb 4, 2005
43,885
1
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Will airlines now institute a sensible policy of leaving a few seats open for employees to occupy, if necessary, instead of overlooking and then flexing its muscle against unsuspecting passengers? Because United didn't do anything that was outside its legal scope, from what I can tell, which is perhaps the most disturbing part of this.
They just have pre-reserved empty seats and not book them at all
 
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