Airline incidents dominated April’s headlines, and saw one man roughed up and dragged from a plane, while another was booted from his flight for making a pit stop while the plane was still taxied. The airlines’ bad behavior and bad press continues, as yet another such incident has come to light via YouTube. On April 23, the Schear family was kicked off of a flight from Maui to Los Angeles over an infant and a carseat. Apparently, dad Brian had purchased a ticket for the seat next to his for his teenage son, who ended up catching an earlier flight. So Schear figured he’d just set his infant son in that seat (strapped into a carseat), since he had paid for it, after all.
The drama ensued when a flight attendant told Schear he couldn’t keep his baby in that seat. He says the attendants told him he couldn’t just switch the ticket holder’s name, and things escalated verbally until one attendant threatened him with jail over either not giving up the seat, or refusing to get off the evening flight. His wife captured the whole thing on her phone; the YouTube posting of her video is what’s drawn attention to the incident nearly two weeks later.
The video does show an attendant telling Schear that he was committing a federal offense by not complying with her order, which was either “hold your baby in your arms this whole flight,” or “get off this plane right now.” It’s unclear. But the airlines actually advise that you keep your infant in a carseat on a seat while flying, so who can blame the guy for not going along with it. The family eventually deplaned, then paid for a hotel and new flight home the following day. After initially saying it was looking into the matter, Delta has released this statement.
We are sorry for the unfortunate experience our customers had with Delta, and we’ve reached out to them to refund their travel and provide additional compensation. Delta’s goal is to always work with customers in an attempt to find solutions to their travel issues. That did not happen in this case and we apologize.