The CEO of United Airlines apologized to customers on Monday following an incident on an overbooked flight where video appeared to show an elderly man being dragged from his seat and through the aisle of a plane.
Several videos posted on social media appeared to show three law enforcement officers pull a screaming man from his seat on the plane and then drag him by the arms down the aisle as shocked passengers look on. A witness told NBC News the ordeal began after the airline said the flight was overbooked and asked four customers to leave the plane and take a flight the following day.
“This is an upsetting event to all of us here at United,” CEO Oscar Munoz said in a statement. “We are also reaching out to this passenger to talk directly to him and further address and resolve this situation,” he added in the statement. The Chicago Department of Aviation said in a statement Monday afternoon that the incident was “not in accordance with” standard operating procedure and the officer’s actions were “not condoned” by the department. The officer involved was placed on administrative leave effective Monday pending review of the situation, the department said.
United CEO response to United Express Flight 3411. pic.twitter.com/rF5gNIvVd0
— United (@united) April 10, 2017
Social media was quick to call out United Airlines and the local authorities for botching the incident.
“I’m selected because I’m Chinese” I’d like to thank this doctor for speaking up. Too few Asians are willing to talk about discrimination. pic.twitter.com/SagRWp5ZEB
— Joe Wong (@JoeWongComedy) April 11, 2017