United Airlines changes crew flight policy after forcible removal fiasco

The airline industry policy of overbooking flights is well-known but removing passengers after boarding is largely unheard of, especially when they do not volunteer.

United Airlines crew members will no longer be able to bump a passenger who is already seated in one of the airline's planes.

The Airline Passenger Protection Act, sponsored by Republican state Representative Peter Breen, came after Dr. David Dao, 69, was pulled from a United flight at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport to make space for four crew members.

"We issued an updated policy to make sure crews traveling on our aircraft are booked at least 60 minutes prior to departure", United Airlines spokeswoman Maggie Schmerin wrote in an email on Sunday.

Law enforcement officials dragged Dr Dao off a flight departing from Chicago because it was fully booked, and the airline wanted seats for staff members.

Former federal prosecutor and criminal defense attorney Doug Burns explains the possible outcomes of a lawsuit between Dr. David Dao and United A...

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While United is modifying its policy when it comes to booking its own crew, it didn't say if the policy of overbooking flights would be changed. As United flights got cheaper or shorter, about 8 in 10 said they'd take United.

The poll from Morning Consult - which was conducted after a passenger was violently dragged off a United flight last week - could spell trouble for the embattled airline. Dao suffered a concussion and a broken nose, and will undergo reconstructive surgery after losing two front teeth, Demetrio said.

The man who was dragged refused to give up his seat because he is a doctor and said he needed to treat patients.

The airline also has refunded passengers the cost of their tickets, a spokesman for United told dpa.

Videos taken by other passengers show a now-suspended security officer with the Chicago Department of Aviation leaning over to grab Dao and pulling him up.

"This ensures situations like flight 3411 never happen again". The company said it was conducting a full review, and would announce the results by April 30.

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