US House panel to hold hearing on consumer airline issues

The violent removal of a passenger on a United Airlines flight has prompted US Senator Richard Blumenthal to propose a new passengers Bill of Rights that would mandate compensation for travellers involuntarily "bumped" from their airline seats.

No witnesses or precise date was announced, but the hearing comes after a drumbeat of concern from members of Congress.

United Airlines bigs will be on the hot seat at an upcoming House Transportation Committee hearing on commercial airline consumer issues after a passenger was dragged off an April 9 flight in Chicago to make room for crew members.

United spokeswoman Megan McCarthy said the airline looks "forward to meeting with the committee and sharing with them the comprehensive review and the customer-focused actions we will communicate next week". He initially defended the conduct of airline employees before apologizing multiple times. "We are and will make the necessary policy changes to ensure this never happens again". "We are making this a case-study on what not to do and then reinforcing what one might do in a similar instance, ' he said, adding that all airlines and their lawyers should be doing a 'post-mortem" of the incident.

Munoz said that the response to a letter that the CEO sent to a group of United's "most loyal customers" was positive. The airline has a deadline from the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee to answer questions about the incident.

Davis, a transportation committee member, co-authored a provision past year that requires airlines to seat children age 13 or younger next to an adult or older child traveling with them. The company operates more nonstop US-China flights than any other airline, including flights to five Chinese cities, handling about 20% of US-China traffic.

United Airlines' reputation is circling the drain after the forcible removal of a passenger from one of its flights went viral and made global headlines last week. It also said it would no longer call on law enforcement to remove passengers.

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