United CEO: No one will be fired over passenger dragging incident


Kirby, United CEO Oscar Munoz and CFO Andrew Levy each used the occasion of the call to once again take responsibility for what Kirby called "this awful event", when David Dao was ultimately dragged off the April 9 flight from Chicago O'Hare to Louisville after he refused to give up his seat to a crew member of Republic Airways, which was operating the flight for United.

"You can and should expect more from us and as CEO, I take full responsibility for making this right", he added during Tuesday's conference call.

Chicago aviation officers dragged the 69-year-old doctor - one of four passengers randomly selected for removal to accommodate United employees - after he refused to budge or accept a travel voucher incentive. "They want us to do the right thing".

Munoz and other top United executives again apologized for the incident, and vowed to improve customer service.

"I'm sure there was a lot of conjecture about me personally", Munoz said when asked if any executives had left the company.

The fiasco has hurt shares of United Continental, which dropped about 4 percent on Tuesday, despite the company reporting better-than-expected earnings late Monday. "There was never a consideration for firing an employee".

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His lawyers said he plans to sue the airline.

Last week, video of the passenger being forcibly removed from his seat on a Chicago-Louisville flight by police officers went viral on Chinese social media, becoming the hottest topic on Weibo with over 1 billion views and 360,000 comments.

Some politicians and consumer advocates have called for a ban on overselling flights.

Even in normal times, airlines closely - even daily - scrutinize numbers such as advance sales and occupancy levels on planes.

Morningstar said, "The flight 3411 incident, while undoubtedly a public relations disaster, will most likely not materially affect United's medium- to long-term financial and operational performance". "That's normally a very low booking period", United President Scott Kirby said on the call. He said that United's forecast for the April-through-June quarter has not changed.

According to the couple, who said they were en route to get married, a federal marshal had escorted them from the plane before take-off from Houston, Texas, but United denied this on Sunday, saying in a statement that neither a marshal nor other authorities was involved.