Delta Boots Family With Small Children Off Overbooked Red Eye Flight: 'I Paid for This Seat'
Video of the incident is yet another black eye for the airline industry.
A California father's outrage is on full view as he's told his entire family is to be booted from an overbooked Delta flight.
A flight attendant actually told the Orange County couple that their kids could be taken away if they didn’t surrender their seats.
“You'll be committing a federal offense," the attendant said in cell phone video of the incident. "You and your wife will be in jail and your kids will be put in foster care."
A shocked Brian Schear replies: “Wait, we'll be in jail and my wife and kids will be what?”
It happened on board a Delta Airlines flight from Hawaii to Los Angeles last month.
Schear and his wife, Brittany, were returning from vacation with their 2-year-old son and 1-year-old daughter when they were told to give up one of the seats.
The father had actually bought a seat for his 18-year-old son, but when the teen took an earlier flight, the family used the ticket for their 2-year-old. That switch gave the airline an excuse to take the seat back and give it to a standby passenger.
A flight attendant actually suggested they take their infant son out of his car seat and sit on one of their laps for the duration of the flight.
“It's a red eye. He won't sleep unless he's in his car seat. So otherwise he'll be sitting in my wife's lap crawling all over the place and it’s not safe,” the concerned father said.
Federal authorities “strongly urge you to secure your child in a child restraint seat for the duration of your flight."
But the flight attendants insisted the seat had to be given up. The flight attendants said the family had to get off or all passengers would have to deplane.
It was midnight and the family was stranded.
"I got two infants and my wife," the concerned father says in the video. "We have nowhere to stay. There are no more flights. What are we supposed to do, sleep in the airport?"
“At this point you guys are on your own,” the flight attendant says.
Schear finally agreed to leave the plane.
They wound up paying $2,000 for another flight home the next day, according to reports.
"We are sorry for what this family experienced," Delta said in a statement. "Our team has reached out, and we will be talking with them to better understand what happened and come to a resolution."
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