Need help now? Call 216.321.7774

United Airlines Kills Puppy & “Assumes Full Responsibility”

[By Bruce Hennes, Hennes Communications]

Once again, United Airlines is tone-deaf when it comes to saying it’s sorry.  Here’s the story, from the Washington Post:

United Airlines said it will “assume full responsibility” for the death of a 10-month-old puppy that appeared to have suffocated after it was placed inside an overhead compartment on a three-hour flight from Houston to New York on Monday.

According to accounts from fellow passengers on United Flight 1284, a flight attendant demanded that a woman traveling with the puppy and her two children place the puppy in its carrier inside the overhead bin for the duration of the flight. The woman protested, witnesses said, but the flight attendant assured her that the dog would be safe, and told her the family would not be allowed to travel if she refused to stow the dog in the bin.

When the airplane landed at LaGuardia Airport and the owner opened the overhead bin, the puppy was no longer breathing.

“This was a tragic accident that should never have occurred, as pets should never be placed in the overhead bin,” a United spokeswoman said in a statement Tuesday. “We assume full responsibility for this tragedy and express our deepest condolences to the family and are committed to supporting them.”

United will “assume full responsibility”?  Is that an apology? Or is that the opening statement of a legal argument?

United Airlines apparently learned nothing from the Dr. Dao fiasco, when United CEO Oscar Munoz, in his initial statement, didn’t apologize to anyone – including the injured Dao – and said, infamously, “I apologize for having to re-accommodate these customers.”

Nothing can bring a dead 10-month-old puppy back to life.

But a “we are devastated…we cannot imagine the shock…based on what we know right now, what this flight attendant did was wrong” would have been light-years better than the legalistic “we assume full responsibility.”

Clearly, the lawyers at United are driving these ham-fisted statements.  Thank goodness they’re not driving the planes, too.

For the full story, click here:

Contact Us

Your name Organization name Describe your situation Your phone number Your email address
Leave this as it is