US airline Delta is facing a public-relations problem after a family claimed they were kicked off a flight for refusing to give up a child’s seat.
“This is a federal offence and then you and your wife will be in jail and your kids will be in foster care,” a crew member can be heard telling the family.
A YouTube video of the incident has racked up almost million views. Delta said it was “sorry for the unfortunate experience” and would compensate the family.
The incident follows the case of passenger Dr David Dao, who grabbed global headlines when he was injured while being physically removed from a United Airlines flight last month. He settled in court last month for an undisclosed sum.
The latest incident happened on a flight from Maui in Hawaii to Los Angeles on 23 April, but only came to light when the video was posted online.
The eight-minute video shows Brian Schear arguing that he has paid for the seat, while crew members try to convince him to give up the seat, on a flight Mr Schear claims was overbooked.
His wife, Brittany, who recorded the video, said that she was upset they were threatened with prison.
“When you’re a mother and you have your one-year-old and your two-year-old and they threaten to take your kids away from you, I mean whether that’s possible or whether that’s, you know against the law, it just, it made my heart drop,” she said.
On Thursday evening, a day after the video was posted, Delta released a statement about the incident.
“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,” the company said.