This file photo taken on April 12, 2017 shows shows travelers as they check-in at the United Airlines Premier Access in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by AFP)
It’s been less than two weeks since a video of a bloodied passenger being dragged off a United Airlines aircraft ignited a national discussion about the airline industry’s treatment of passengers, and now, yet another onboard incident captured on video is raising eyebrows — and it’s resulted in the immediate grounding of a flight attendant.
A video posted to Facebook Friday by Surain Adyanthaya — a passenger onboard American Airlines flight 591, from San Franciso to Dallas — shows an intense confrontation between flight crew and a handful of passengers at the front of the aircraft while it is still on the tarmac in San Francisco.
The heated moment began when a flight attendant took away a stroller from a female passenger, Adyanthaya told ABC affiliate WFAA in Dallas, which reported that the woman was from Argentina and travelling with her two children.
The nearly three-minute video does not show the flight attendant taking the stroller, but near its start, the woman is seen crying and asking for the stroller back.
The incident then escalates with a male passenger coming to her defense, and asking for the male flight attendant’s name, saying, “Hey bud, hey bud, you do that to me and I’ll knock you flat!”
The flight attendant, who is visibly angry, points his finger at the passenger and says, “Hey, you stay out of this!”
A pilot appears to attempt to calm down the flight attendant.
During the entire video, the female passenger continues to be heard crying.
This photo taken on July 07, 2015 shows United Airlines planes on the tarmac at San Francisco International Airport in San Francisco, California. (Photo by AFP)
American Airlines was quick to react — 20 minutes after the plane landed in Dallas. It apologized for the incident and said the flight attendant had been grounded. The woman and her family were also upgraded to first class.
“We have seen the video and have already started an investigation to obtain the facts,” the Dallas-based airline said in a statement. “What we see on this video does not reflect our values or how we care for our customers. We are deeply sorry for the pain we have caused this passenger and her family and to any other customers affected by the incident. We are making sure all of her family’s needs are being met while she is in our care. After electing to take another flight, we are taking special care of her and her family and upgrading them to first class for the remainder of their international trip.”
The statement continues, “The actions of our team member captured here do not appear to reflect patience or empathy, two values necessary for customer care. In short, we are disappointed by these actions. The American team member has been removed from duty while we immediately investigate this incident.”
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