United Airlines boss: no one will be fired for plane 'dragging' incident

Posted April 21, 2017

United boss Oscar Munoz faced calls to quit after a video emerged of David Dao being wrenched from his seat to make room for crew members on the flight from Chicago on April 10. Of 419 people who voted, 386 said airlines should not be allowed to overbook flights.

Dao reportedly yelled that he was being discriminated against for being of Asian descent, a searing allegation given that United controls nearly 20 percent of U.S. airline traffic to China and has a partnership with Air China.

A lawyer for Dr. David Dao said his client suffered a concussion, broken nose and lost two front teeth when he was violently removed from a Unite... The CEO added that it was clear "we have further to go in terms of elevating the experience customers have with us".

The incident shined a new light on the practice of overbooking, which airlines increasingly rely upon to avoid losing money on seats left when some passengers do not show up for scheduled flights.

United Airlines published first-quarter financial results on April 17, posting its first-quarter net income at 96 million dollars, diluted earnings per share at 0.31 dollars, pre-tax earnings at 145 million dollars and pre-tax margin at 1.7 percent.

United did not say when Mr Munoz met with the Chinese consulate officials.

The incident on United Flight 3411 last week that sent the airline into an unprecedented public relations crisis hasn't caused it to downgrade performance expectations going into the second quarter.

Munoz declined to comment on any other policy changes coming to United Airlines, according to The Tribune.

Oscar Munoz, United's CEO has repeatedly apologized for the incident and assured customers that law enforcement removing passengers from United planes for reasons other than safety or security would "never happen again".

Asked if there was a drop in bookings from China, where video of the incident provoked widespread outrage, Kirby said it's too early to say because there are too few days to measure possible changes.

"It's really too early for us to tell anything about bookings and in particular last week because it was the week before Easter, that's normally a very low booking period", said United President Scott Kirby.

United spooked some investors and analysts in February when it announced it would add 47 round-trip flights in the US starting this summer as it tried to boost connections at its major hubs.