Economy

Man dragged off flight was a 'bad moment' for United: CEO

Man dragged off flight was a 'bad moment' for United: CEO

Lawyers for the Kentucky man violently pulled from a United Airlines flight Sunday have asked a court to order the airline and Chicago aviation police to preserve evidence documenting the incident, which has enraged people around the world. As of Wednesday, the Chicago Department of Aviation has suspended three officers in connection with the incident pending the outcome of an investigation.

The officers' union contract prohibits the city from releasing their names, Pride said.

Videos of Dao being dragged down the aisle of a flight from Chicago to Louisville on Sunday sparked a furor on social media and prompted United CEO Oscar Munoz to apologize on Wednesday and promise that an incident like this "will never happen again". The statement by Chicago attorney Stephen Golan also said the family has asked for privacy.

Mr Munoz said the problem resulted from a "system failure" that prevented employees from using "common sense" in the situation and that Dr David Dao, whom security officers dragged by his hands, on his back, from the cabin before takeoff, was not at fault.

Munoz, who leads United's parent company, apologized again to Dao, his family and the other passengers who witnessed him being taken off the flight.

"That is not who our family at United (Airlines) is", he said.

Flight 3411 was sold out - passengers had boarded, and every seat was filled - when the airline discovered that it needed to find room for four crew members.

Munoz's comments are in stark contrast to the tone-deaf memo he originally sent to United staff, in which he called Dao "disruptive and belligerent" and said employees went "above and beyond". But he did an about-face days later, saying the doctor did nothing wrong.

"My initial words fell short of truly expressing the shame", Munoz said today in an exclusive interview on "Good Morning America". "That's something I've learned from". "He was a paying passenger, sitting in our seat, in our aircraft. No one should be treated that way".

Further, Munoz said United will not use law enforcement to remove on-board passengers in the future, as was the case on Sunday evening. "We can't do that", Munoz said.

Demetrio said he likely will file a lawsuit on Dao's behalf, adding that airlines - and United in particular - have long "bullied" passengers.

The passengers can take their compensation in cash, travel credits or miles, United's Megan McCarthy told the AP.


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