1. Delta Air Lines apologizes after California family booted from flight

Delta Air Lines apologizes after California family booted from flight

US' Delta Air Lines has issued an apology for kicking a family with two young children off a flight after the customers had already boarded, the media reported.

By: | Los Angeles | Updated: May 5, 2017 4:42 PM
At issue was a seat the man’s infant son was in. That seat was booked under the name of Schear’s older son, who took an earlier flight. (Reuters)

Delta Air Lines is offering refunds and compensation to a California family that says they were forced off a plane and threatened with jail after refusing to give up one of their seats on a crowded flight. A video of the April 23 incident was uploaded to YouTube on Wednesday and added to the list of recent encounters on airlines that have gone viral, including the dragging of a bloodied passenger off a United Express plane. Brian and Brittany Schear of Huntington Beach, California, told KABC-TV in Los Angeles that they were returning from Kahului Airport in Maui, Hawaii with their two toddlers.

They wanted to put one of the children in a seat they had bought for their 18-year-old son, who instead flew home on an earlier flight. Delta says on its website that tickets cannot be transferred and name changes are not allowed. Federal regulations do not bar changing the name on a ticket as long as the new passenger’s name can be run through a data base before the flight, according to a Transportation Security Administration spokesman. By late yesterday afternoon, Delta still had not explained why the Schears were removed from the plane. A spokesman said the flight was not overbooked.

On the video, Brian Schear can be heard talking with a person off-camera, it is not clear whether that person is a Delta employee, a security officer, or somebody else. After Schear says that he won’t leave, the airline will have to remove him, the person off-camera replies, “You and your wife will be in jail … it’s a federal offense if you don’t abide” by an airline crew’s order. “I bought that seat,” Schear protests.

Schear then suggests that his wife could hold one of the toddlers during takeoff and then put the youngster in the car seat. Another person, who appears to be a Delta supervisor, tells him that federal rules require that children under 2 must stay in a parent’s lap throughout the flight. That is false. The Federal Aviation Administration “strongly urges” that infants be in a car seat, although it permits those under 2 to be held in a parent’s lap.

On its website, Delta recommends that parents buy a seat for children under 2 and put them in an approved child-safety seat. Brian Schear spoke briefly to The Associated Press by telephone Thursday and said he has been overwhelmed by media requests. He declined additional comment said the family may hold a news conference. The Atlanta-based airline issued an updated statement late yesterday afternoon.

“We are sorry for the unfortunate experience our customers had with Delta, and we’ve reached out to them to refund their travel and provide additional compensation,” the statement read. Delta said its goal is to work with customers to resolve travel issues, “that did not happen in this case and we apologise.” A spokesman said Delta would not disclose the amount of the refund or compensation.

  1. J
    JDSKULL
    May 5, 2017 at 1:40 pm
    If Delta’s goal is to always work with customers in an attempt to find solutions to their travel issues. You would think that Delta would just maybe inform their employees of that fact. Maybe there would be less of these little misunderstandings. The way I understand the situation is that the family bought 4 seats. Even if only 3 or even 1 person went on the flight those seats had been sold and Delta had no right to try to re them.
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