Family Kicked Off Plane

18 Replies
ry - January 23

Did you guys see this story? Omg I dont know who I feel sorry for-everyone I guess! ORLANDO, Fla. (Jan. 23) - AirTran Airways on Tuesday defended its decision to remove a Massachusetts couple from a flight after their crying 3-year-old daughter refused to take her seat before takeoff. AirTran officials said they followed Federal Aviation Administration rules that children age 2 and above must have their own seat and be wearing a seat belt upon takeoff. "The flight was already delayed 15 minutes and in fairness to the other 112 passengers on the plane, the crew made an operational decision to remove the family," AirTran spokeswoman Judy Graham-Weaver said. Julie and Gerry Kulesza, who were headed home to Boston on Jan. 14 from Fort Myers, said they just needed a little more time to calm their daughter, Elly. "We weren't given an opportunity to hold her, console her or anything," Julie Kulesza said in a telephone interview Tuesday. The Kuleszas said they told a flight attendant they had paid for their daughter's seat, but asked whether she could sit in her mother's lap. The request was denied. She was removed because "she was climbing under the seat and hitting the parents and wouldn't get in her seat" during boarding, Graham-Weaver said. The Orlando-based carrier reimbursed the family $595.80, the cost of the three tickets, and the Kuleszas flew home the next day. They also were offered three roundtrip tickets anywhere the airline flies, Graham-Weaver said. The father said his family would never fly AirTran again.

 

sahmof3 - January 23

Yeah... I feel sorry for everyone. That really stinks! I mean you just never know what a kid will do in a new situation... but you can't expect the airlines to hold up the whole airport, either.

 

ry - January 23

I know, and the airline seemed to really try and appease them with the full refund and free roundtrip tickets.

 

sahmof3 - January 23

Yeah, I think that's more than fair given the situation... I mean, since it wasn't even the airlines fault.

 

LisaB - January 23

After working in the industry I can tell you a 10 minture delay (these are old figures) costs the airline $10,000. So although I am very sorry for the family. if Air Tran is anything like the airline I worked for all the flight attendants got written up for the delay. Rough industry- bad decison with no winners. :(

 

EMBERBABY - January 23

I agree with sahmof3, that is MORE than fair.

 

piratesmermaid - January 23

As much as I hate AirTran, I agree with sahmof3 and LisaB.

 

jb - January 23

I think the family is very ungrateful. I personally dislike air tran. The airline OVER compensated them if you ask me. I really don't know why they would even deserve free tickets in the future. They should be sending the airline an apology. I wouldn't expect any airline to 'hold a flight' for me while I calmed my dd down.

 

Mellissa - January 23

i don't really understand why the parents are upset with the airline. if my 3 year old was throwing that big of a tantrum i would have voluntarily gotten off of the plane and took the next one after i got my dd calmed down. of course, my dd is so small i would be able to get away with saying she's 2 and holding her in my lap. lol. i am the type that gets embarra__sed easily, so i think i would have done anything to remove myself from that situation. and the airline was offering to make it up to them... the family should be grateful in my opinion.

 

Bonnie - January 23

Okay. mayeb this will make me sound really cold-hearted. But IMO, a three year old is old enough to listen to her parents. The parents should have sat her b___t down and beckled her b___t in the seat, period, end of story. Screaming and throwing a temper tantrum or not. If it were my kid, I would have just buckled her flailing b___t right in the seat, ignored the temper tantrum, and then would have had some very serious and stern words with her once she calmed down. I just don't get why the airline would even offer them the free tickets.

 

Kara H. - January 23

Bonnie - I was thinkin the EXACT same thing. I may have even gone so far to take her to the bathroom and wamed her backside for not minding. She obviously had been on a plane before since they were flying home, so its not like she was scared of a new situation.

 

hello - January 24

Although i dont hit my daughter kara's comment made me laugh. I agree that the feral child could have been restrained and made to sit down screaming or not.......hitting parents is a total lack of respect issue in my book, i would have made my daughter sit down after copping a slap from her ....... the child won really and it shouldnt happen......i agree with bonnie and kara

 

HannahBaby - January 24

I dont feel sorry for the family, if you cant controll your daughter why should the plane be delayed so that you can attempt to calm down your child. I would have been livid if i had been on that plane....Reason number 1 i would never take my terror on a plane!!

 

sahmof3 - January 24

I may have also just strapped my kid down and that would be that, although I suspect my kid would still keep screaming and causing a disurbance, but at least the plane would be able to leave. I don't think I'd spank them in that situation... it would only make it worse... at least for mine I KNOW it would. Yes, she flew before since it wa a return flight, but that may be why she was acting up... ilke saying, "Wait just a minute... I remember this... I was strapped down for HOURS the last time and I didn't care for it." lol In other words, I don't think the child's behavior on this particular flight reflects that the parents are bad parents that have no control over their child in their everyday life. At least I have yet to see a parent of a toddler whose kid has never been a total terror in public at some point in time. ;-)

 

Rabbits07 - January 24

Yeah, sometimes our little angels can grow horns in a matter of seconds...lol. I do sympathize with the family in a way because I imagine they must have been very distraught and flustered. I have had my tots take a hissy fit in public before and it can be very frustrating and sometimes you just get so upset yourself that your mind kind of blanks about what would be appropriate to do. In most cases if you are out in public you would remove the child from the situation (go to the car, etc), but I would imagine that being on a plane mom and dad were panicking because they needed to get home so it would be kind of hard to remove her from the plane. I have also been in the situation of trying to carry a fighting, flailing, screaming child out of a store and it ain't pretty. I'd think that the parents were probably thinking that it would be better to try to coax the child into the seat than get into a physical struggle....in hindsight I'm sure they wished they had just picked the little girl up and strapped in her in screaming and kicking or not. If they are parents that spank then I'm sure they were most hesitant to do that in this day and age......though I'm sure that by that point most of the the patrons were probably thinking, "why don't you just wear that kid out so we can go?!"....lol. I'm sure it was a huge inconvenience and embarra__sment to the parents, but I think that the airline did what they felt was in the best interest of all their patrons. I think they more than made up for it with flying the family home the next day AND giving them the roundtrip tix free.

 

eclipse - January 24

I still think the airline overcompensated them for something they should have had more control over. And if my kid hit me and didn't listen, ooh...

 

Shea - January 24

I think the family was more than compensated. I love Air Tran, I will choose it over another if I can, just curious why some of you said you hate it? I think United is the worst - rudest employees in particular.

 

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