United Airlines was right to throw passenger off, says travel writer

United Airlines: 'It's a horrible situation, but the airline was in the right', says Independent travel writer

The man was left with injuries after being dragged from the flight (Credit: Twitter @iaceo)

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

A leading travel writer has said the situation which unfolded on United Airlines was "horrible", but in fact, "the airline was in the right."

In an incident which quickly went viral, United Airlines have been weathering a backlash after asking four passengers on a flight from Chicago to Louisville to vacate their seats for staff.

When selected at random, one of the men refused to go, which prompted airport security to drag him off, kicking and screaming. He suffered injuries as a result.

Simon Calder, who writes for The Independent, said the situation was a "complete car crash." 

He added: "It’s a horrible, horrible situation – very upsetting for everyone involved – but actually, the airline was in the right and the passenger is in the wrong.

"The law is quite clear. The captain’s in charge of the aircraft. If he or she says you can’t travel, you have to vacate your seat and go.

"If you fail to do so, you immediately become a disruptive passenger and they need to drag you – in this case, kicking and screaming - from the aircraft. 

"It never should have got to this stage. It should have all been sorted out at the gate. It was a complete car crash."

The CEO of the company, Oscar Munoz, has defended the company's actions in a statement on Twitter.

He followed this up with an email which he penned to his employees, in which he made it clear he "stood behind" the company.