Update on Our Redmond Passenger

August 4, 2012 at 8:49pm

** UPDATE: Aug. 6, 2012 - 2:04 p.m. **

 

A Message from Horizon Air President Glenn Johnson

 

I've seen a lot of concern by our customers about the treatment of the gentleman who flew out of Redmond, Oregon, to see his daughter. Now that we've been able to largely complete our review, which I've been overseeing throughout the weekend, I'd like to share some information with you. First and foremost, we've determined that we could and should have handled this better and I apologize to our passenger on behalf of all of us at Horizon Air and Alaska Airlines.

 

I’m happy to report the gentleman has been able to visit with his daughter after arriving at his destination before noon on Saturday. We are providing him with complimentary roundtrip flights for this trip and have offered free tickets for another visit down the road. We're also working with Open Doors Organization, a disability advocacy group that focuses on travel issues, to learn from this customer’s experience and to help us with our ongoing care for passengers with disabilities. Alaska and Horizon have partnered with various disability organizations for years to help our employees better serve our customers.

 

This experience has reminded us of the importance of assisting passengers with disabilities and making sure every one of them receives the special care they may need. The information we've gathered during our review will certainly improve our efforts going forward. I'd like to say again that we're sorry for the experience of this customer and thank everyone who has brought this to our attention.

 

Glenn Johnson

President, Horizon Air

 

------------------------------------------

 Aug. 4, 2012 - 8:49 p.m.

 

We would like to share one last update about our customer who was traveling to see his daughter. We appreciate the community's concern about this passenger's welfare. Please know that we fly a variety of travelers with different needs and provide a variety of services for them every day. Our employees stand ready to assist any customer needing assistance. While we're not allowed to ask if a passenger has a disability, which would violate their civil rights, we can ask if they have special needs we can help with.

 

In this case, our customer arrived late and didn't request our assistance or let us know of any disabilities. He was also exhibiting signs of inebriation and smelled of alcohol, something we were reluctant to share from an internal report issued immediately after this customer left the airport. We are doing so now to provide some additional background on what drove our perspective on the situation.

 

Our customer is now at his alternate destination where he said he would be meeting his daughter. And we are conducting a thorough review and follow-up. We're in the preliminary stage of our review and will respond directly to the customer within 10 days.

 

We appreciate everyone’s patience while we conclude our review. Thank you for your understanding.

 

We shared some other background information earlier today. All of that can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/notes/alaska-airlines/update-on-redmond-passenger/10150959812186073