CHICAGO United Airlines (UAL.N) and the passenger who was dragged from a Chicago flight earlier this month have reached a settlement for an undisclosed sum, they said on Thursday, in the carrier’s latest step to contain damage from an incident which has sparked international outrage.
Viral videos of Dr. David Dao being dragged down the aisle of a United jet and Chief Executive Oscar Munoz’s handling of the incident touched off a public outcry, prompted calls for new regulation of the airline industry by congressmen, and led United’s board of directors to reverse an agreement to make Munoz the company’s chairman in 2018.
United said earlier on Thursday that it would offer passengers who give up their seats up to $10,000, reduce overbooking of flights and no longer call on law enforcement officers to deny ticketed passengers their seats.
Southwest Airlines also said on Thursday it would end overbooking of flights.
Dao, a 69-year-old Vietnamese-American doctor, was injured and hospitalized after Chicago aviation police dragged him from the plane to make space for four crew members on the flight from the city’s O’Hare International Airport to Louisville, Kentucky.
United has taken “full responsibility for what happened on Flight 3411, without attempting to blame others, including the City of Chicago,” Thomas Demetrio, an attorney for Dao, said in a statement.
“We are pleased to report that United and Dr. Dao have reached an amicable resolution of the unfortunate incident that occurred aboard flight 3411,” United said in a separate statement.
“We look forward to implementing the improvements we have announced, which will put our customers at the centre of everything we do.”
(Reporting by Timothy Mclaughlin in Chicago; Additional reporting by David Shepardson in Washington; Editing by Richard Chang)