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United Airlines Passenger Will Seek Legal Action…Duh

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Video of Sunday's incident taken by other passengers and showing Dao being dragged up the plane aisle and with a bloodied mouth circulated rapidly, causing public outrage. United was left reeling by the now-infamous incident, widely seen after passengers shared videotapes. In an email obtained by CNN, the airline told its passengers it was offering them $500 flight vouchers but only if they agreed not to sue the company.

The impromptu hearing was called by aldermen after cellphone videos of the incident made national headlines and lead to widespread criticism of United.

Dr. David Dao has been discharged from a hospital but he will require reconstructive surgery, said attorney Thomas Demetrio, whose law firm is representing the 69-year-old Kentucky physician. However, Gupta said, "I think the serious public relations risk to United will give them an incentive to provide a generous settlement".

He says it exposed a culture in which airlines have "bullied" passengers.

"All airlines - they need to come out and figure out this overbooking situation", Demetrio said.

"I hope it gets all the airlines' attention", Thune said of the congressional oversight. But they all apologized for how the situation was handled. "Are we going to continue to be treated like cattle?" Dao was not there.

One of Dao's five children, Crystal Pepper, spoke at the news conference. "We can not stress enough that we remain steadfast in our commitment to make this right", United Airlines said in a statement.

"If you're going to eject a passenger, under no circumstances can it be done with unreasonable force or violence", Demetrio said. "Someone's got to", the lawyer said. No one should ever be mistreated this way. One passenger had warned Bell that the animal was a scorpion.

United said it has apologized to Dao.

While Aviation Department officers who pulled Dao from the plane were not United employees, Demetrio said United ultimately is responsible for what happens on its flights. "He said that being dragged down the aisle was more horrifying and awful than what he experienced in leaving Vietnam", Demetrio said.

Pepper said her father and mother were flying home to Kentucky from a vacation in California.

Flight crew members flushed the creature before the plane landed and another passenger, a nurse, gave Bell a painkiller until he could get medical treatment, CBC News reported.

Chicago's aviation officers are not part of the regular police force, unlike in many other big cities.

Joining us Thursday to discuss the effect United's recent episode may have on the flight industry is aviation attorney John Hoff and Joseph Schofer, a professor of civil and environmental engineering at Northwestern University who focuses on transportation policy.

Three officers from the Chicago Department of Aviation were placed on administrative leave as authorities investigate the Dao incident.

Jeff Redding, deputy commissioner of safety and security for the city's Department of Aviation, told aldermen that operating procedures bar aviation officers from boarding a plane "if it's a customer service issue".

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