United CEO issues new apology after man dragged off plane

CHICAGO (KTVU/AP) -- United Airlines CEO Oscar Munoz issued an apology two days after video of the forced removal of one passenger from a flight became a social media sensation and sparked outrage from customers to members of Congress.

A protest Tuesday at Chicago's O'Hare Airport came with harsh criticism from Illinois Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky.

"I am considering legislation that would say no involuntary removals from airplanes" said Congresswoman Schakowsky.

The cell phone video showed the United passenger being forced off a flight scheduled to depart O'Hare for Louisville, Kentucky. The man was dragged off the plane by an airport security guard, after the passenger refused to give up his seat, saying he was a doctor and needed to get home to see patients.
Attorneys for the man involved confirmed Tuesday, that the man was a Kentucky doctor David Dao, 69, and is being treated in a hospital for injuries suffered in the incident.

The turbulent times sent United Airlines' stock plunging Tuesday by more than one billion dollars at one point in market trading.

Members of the U.S. Senate commerce committee are calling for a full explanation. Dao is from Vietnam and video on China's social media drew more than 550 million views.

The outrage was fueled by United's CEO Oscar Munez who described Dao as "belligerent" Monday but changed course Tuesday.

"I continue to be disturbed by what happened on this flight and I deeply apologize to the customer forcibly removed and to all the customers aboard. No one should ever be mistreated this way," Munez's statement said.

"I think they should set some policies that if someone doesn't want to leave the plane there should be no reason to push someone off the plane," said Imran Qureshi, a San Francisco traveler.

Dao's background has been dragged into the public spotlight. He lost his medical license from 2004-2015 after a conviction for falsely prescribing drugs.
But many passengers say he was not aggressive and his background has nothing to do with what happened

"I was pretty shocked," said Ganesh Iyer, a Marketing professor at UC Berkeley's Haas school of business. Iyer says the mark of a good company is the attitude toward those customers who are unhappy.

"A customer-oriented organization collects a lot of valuable information from customers who complain," Professor Iyer said, adding that a company can learn much from it's most dissatisfied customers, as well as learn how its front-line employees are performing.

"Because that is what tells them in many cases what aspects of their product or their service is not performing up to par," Iyer said. .

New Jersey governor Chris Christie says federal officials should stop allowing airlines to overbook flights until the review is completed.

Last year, United forced more than 3,765 people off flights. Another 62,895 United passengers volunteered to give up their seats, probably in exchange for travel vouchers. That's out of more than 86 million people who boarded a United flight in 2016, according to government figures. United ranks in the middle of U.S. carriers when it comes to bumping passengers
 

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