Another Family “Booted” From US Airline Flight
A family of four including two young children were kicked off a Delta airline flight. This flight was to go to Southern California- an end to a Hawaiian vacation for the family. The incident which occurred on April 23rd was filmed and uploaded to YouTube.
The video posted to YouTube by Brittany Schear, shows the disagreement between her husband, Brian Schear, and several Delta flight attendants. The family refused to give up the seat which was occupied by one of their children.
During the clip, Mr Schear repeated over and over that he has paid for the seat and thus should be “left alone”.
“You need to do what’s right, I bought the seat and you just need to leave us alone.” Mentioned Mr Schear during a discussion with a flight attendant.
Whilst many YouTube comments are assuming it was another issue of an overbooked flight (similar to the case of united airlines), it had turned out that this wasn’t the case at all. Whilst the flight was indeed overbooked, this was not the reason as to why the passengers were asked to get off the flight. The father explained how he had purchased the seat for his older 18-year-old son, with intentions upon booking that his wife would hold their 2-year-old on her lap during the flight.
After the realisation had kicked in, that safety and the child’s restlessness would be at play, the father decided that the two-year-old would get the seat that he had previously booked for his 18 year old.The 18-year-old flew back on an earlier flight. Without notifying air staff security and not checking in the 18-year-old son, he embarked the plane with the assumption that this seat would still be free.
As a member of the cabin crew explained to him, the only person that can sit in the seat is the person whose name stands on the ticket. Passengers may move seats if given permission during the flight, if the plane is empty or if all members of the party are present. In this case, Mr Schear’s 2 year old was not scheduled to be on that flight in that seat, even with a CRS. Thus the federal policy was broken by this passenger.
“The Child Restraint System (CRS) is a hard-backed child safety seat that is approved by the government for use in both motor vehicles and aircraft. FAA controls the approval of some but not all CRSs.” according to the federal aviation administration.
The only way to use a CRS is to buy a ticket “for your child”, hence meaning the child is unable to use the CRS if the seat does not stand under their name.
“If you do not buy a ticket for your child, ask if your airline will allow you to use an empty seat. If your airline’s policy allows this, avoid the busiest days and times to increase the likelihood of finding an empty seat next to you.” mentions the federal aviation administration.
This means that Delta airlines were correct in refusing the travel of this family. If the passenger would have taken a look at the rules documented by government approved websites, or even enquired at the airport themselves, the hassle could have easily been saved.
Again, the media have portrayed another internet fuelled incident as the airlines fault, without reading between the lines.