I'm open to suggestions on what to do with all of my United miles, because hell to the no. This isn't okay.
Witnesses say passengers had already boarded on Sunday evening at O'Hare International Airport when United asked for volunteers to take another flight the next day to make room for four United staff members who needed seats.
The airline offered $400 and a free hotel, passenger Audra D. Bridges told the Louisville Courier-Journal. When no one volunteered, the offer was doubled to $800. When there were still no bites, the airline selected four passengers to leave the flight — including the man in the video and his wife.
"They told him he had been selected randomly to be taken off the flight," Bridges said on Facebook. She said there was no incident involving the man until he was told to give up his seat.
The man said he was a doctor, and that he "needed to work at the hospital the next day," passenger Jayse Anspach said on Twitter.
"He said he wasn't going to [get off the plane]," Bridges wrote on Facebook. "He was talking to his lawyer on the phone."
Then United brought in the police.
Both Bridges and Anspach posted videos of three law enforcement officers, who appear to be wearing the uniforms of Chicago aviation police, wrenching the man out of his seat, prompting wails. His face appeared to strike an armrest. Then they dragged his limp body down the aisle.
They had to remove everyone from the plane so the crew could clean up the blood that was left behind. No, really.
Passenger Forcibly Removed From United Flight, Prompting Outcry https://t.co/FOg2OHLBrP— NPR (@NPR) April 10, 2017
The original statement from United said, "we apologize for the overbook situation." Major fail. The CEO released a statement that was a smidge more reasonable, but still missed the mark.
United CEO response to United Express Flight 3411. pic.twitter.com/rF5gNIvVd0— United (@united) April 10, 2017
Thankfully, Twitter is here to bring some levity to a horrific situation.
United Airlines is pleased to announce new seating on all domestic flights- in addition to United First and Economy Plus we introduce.... pic.twitter.com/KQjPClU2d2— McNeil (@Reflog_18) April 10, 2017
Are leggings allowed in Fight Club? (United wouldn't allow kids in leggings on a flight recently.)
Pepsi:No other company could have such a PR Disaster!— St Peter (@stpeteyontweety) April 10, 2017
United:...hold my beer
Right now, I suspect that if @United had offered four passengers $10,000 each to get off the plane it would’ve saved them money.— Phil Plait (@BadAstronomer) April 10, 2017