United Passengers Forced Off Airplane
When the crew of a full United flight from Chicago to Louisville, Kentucky, couldn’t find any volunteers to give up their seats to accommodate the last-minute travel needs of company employees on Sunday, four random passengers were taken off the airplane by three uniformed officers — and one man was dragged down the aisle on his back, with his glasses knocked askew, blood on his face and a horrified expression. The incidents were recorded by other passengers on their cellphones, creating a PR nightmare for the airline. “Oh my god!” one passenger says, as the man is dragged past her seat. “Look what you did to him!”
The incident began when an airline supervisor walked onto the plane and brusquely announced: “We have United employees that need to fly to Louisville tonight. … This flight’s not leaving until four people get off,” according to The Washington Post. “That rubbed some people the wrong way,” said passenger Tyler Bridges. When no volunteers were forthcoming, despite incentives offered, the officers began to tell people to leave. The first two, a young couple, complied. But the next man said he wouldn’t go because he was a doctor and had patients to see in the morning. He was dragged down the aisle. United officials refused to answer any questions about the incident, according to the Post. United CEO Oscar Munoz did release a brief statement on Monday, saying in part, "I apologize for having to re-accommodate these customers. Our team is moving with a sense of urgency to work with the authorities and conduct our own detailed review of what happened.” Here's one of the passenger videos.