Disabled vet says airline left her to sit in own urine

Discussion in 'American Airlines | AAdvantage' started by sobore, Nov 1, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. sobore
    Original Member

    sobore Gold Member

    Messages:
    12,421
    Likes Received:
    33,847
    Status Points:
    16,520
    http://overheadbin.msnbc.msn.com/_n...vet-says-airline-left-her-to-sit-in-own-urine

    A disabled Army veteran claims she was forced to sit in urine-soaked clothing because American Airlines personnel delayed getting her off an airplane at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport.
    Wheelchair user Dawn Wilcox told msnbc.com that she was flying from New York to Dallas on Saturday morning on her way home to Killeen, Texas, after attending a friend’s funeral. She said she informed the flight attendants shortly before landing that she needed to be taken off the plane first so that could go to the bathroom.

    “They landed and started letting people off,” said Wilcox. “I said, ‘Ma’am, I’m really about to go in my pants.’ I was almost in tears. They’d already let three quarters of the people off and it was too late, I’d already wet my pants.”

    read more:http://overheadbin.msnbc.msn.com/_n...vet-says-airline-left-her-to-sit-in-own-urine
     
  2. Skye1
    Original Member

    Skye1 Silver Member

    Messages:
    522
    Likes Received:
    624
    Status Points:
    720
    Would be curious as to why the person was allegedly insistant on their own cheelchair, and/or declined the aisle wheelchair on-board.

    Also noting that she informed the FA of her bathroom need "shortly before landing". Either she truly did not have to go until shortly before landing, or she waited until shortly before landing to inform the FA, too "shortly" to be able to use the lav's before landing.

    Also noting that the woman apparently didn't have a change of clothes in her carry on...yet to do so would seem like common sense for anyone, disabled or not.
     
    cordray2643, ceieoc, zpaul and 3 others like this.
  3. ceieoc

    ceieoc Silver Member

    Messages:
    195
    Likes Received:
    210
    Status Points:
    420
    From KWTX News, click here to view the video of the stranded disabled veteran Ms. Wilcox.

    Unfortunately, for American Airlines, passenger incontinence accidents happen. Even more unfortunate, this "bladder blowout" happened to a disabled veteran. You may be able to assist the next disabled veteran. I encourage all travelers to become familiar with the useful details in the Department of Transportation document titled Information for the Air Traveler with a Disability: http://airconsumer.ost.dot.gov/publications/HorizonsPrintable.doc
    In this document on page three, the DOT states ..."the carrier cannot charge for the transportation of the attendant. The airline can choose an attendant in a number of ways. It could designate an-off duty employee who happened to be traveling on the same flight to act as the attendant. The carrier or the passenger with a disability could seek a volunteer from among other passengers on the flight to act as the attendant. The carrier could provide a free ticket to an attendant of the passenger's choice for that flight segment. In the end, however, a carrier is not required to find or furnish an attendant." As the DOT advises, "the carrier or passenger with a disability could seek a volunteer from among other passengers on the flight to act as the attendant", has anyone volunteered to be a passenger attendant for a free ticket segment. If you did volunteer to be a passenger attendant, did the airline allow you to keep your frequent flyer miles even though you were traveling on a free ticket? I've never been asked, but I would be honored to assist a fellow passenger, and especially if I was asked to volunteer to assist a disabled veteran. Does anyone know if the airline has a sign-up list to volunteer for this service?

    You can almost be guaranteed, on your flight, that someone will have bladder or fecal incontinence.
    From http://ibs.about.com/od/symptomsofib1/a/AccidentCause.htm
    If you have been having bathroom accidents -- that is, experiencing fecal incontinence -- you may find some solace in the fact that you are not alone. It is estimated that incontinence is experienced by 6 to 15% of the population. Incontinence happens to both men and women and is not a normal part of aging, although your risk of experiencing incontinence does increase as you get older. Gaining knowledge about the possible causes of your incontinence is important to help you find the best treatment for it.

    Flight attendants at American Airlines, currently represented by the Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA), seem to be older and more experienced than many airlines. Like an aging fleet of MD-80's with a higher occurrence of mechanical problems, statistically speaking, American Airlines flight attendants might also experience a higher prevalence of bladder or fecal incontinence than other major airline carriers. I would think the professional flight attendants at American Airlines would therefore empathize and share your concern to help try and prevent passenger discomfort from on-board incontinence accidents. When bladder or fecal incontinence accident happen, I'm confident you can depend on the trained professionals at American Airlines to assist.
     
    PHCaswell, zpaul and sobore like this.
  4. gemac
    Original Member

    gemac Silver Member

    Messages:
    1,027
    Likes Received:
    1,077
    Status Points:
    900
    While I am sorry that this individual is disabled, I don't understand some things about this story. You cannot get the typical wheelchair down an airplane aisle. The "aisle wheelchair" referred to in the article is specially built to go down the aisle. If she could not walk at all, she would have been taken to her seat in an aisle wheelchair, and would therefore know of its existence. Since she says she did not know about it, she must be able to walk short distances on her own. If she informed AA of her disability in advance, she would normally be sitting in a bulkhead seat, relatively near a lav.

    It seems to me that she could have used the lav while others were deplaning, since she could walk that far. According to the article, instead of asking to use the lav, she asked to be taken off first. That may have created the confusion.

    The article says the FAs had a different version of events than the passenger did.
     
    LETTERBOY and zpaul like this.
  5. newbluesea
    Original Member

    newbluesea Gold Member

    Messages:
    2,676
    Likes Received:
    4,728
    Status Points:
    2,570
    There is no point logically discussing these "big money grubbing airline treat poor innocent passengers like crap" reports. Their audience are those who rarely steps on a aircraft and whose opinion regarding airlines are fed/based on the incessant attention grabbing stories about rapacious airline fees ( perhaps only the Kardashians make better copy:rolleyes:)

    There seems like almost an "Amazing Race" quality to who can first post the story on the boards.

    Add the line " disabled and/or veteran" and AA or any other airline in the story is screwed in the court of public opinion.
    Even if the pax in question does not appear to take the normal precautions of most forward thinking flyers.. if they are veterans some expect rules should not apply to them.
     
    mikeef, LETTERBOY and zpaul like this.
  6. Scottrick
    Original Member

    Scottrick Gold Member

    Messages:
    2,586
    Likes Received:
    4,078
    Status Points:
    2,570
    It does seem very confusing. I have never witnessed a disabled person getting wheelchair assistance to be first off the plane They need the aisle clear, and good luck getting everyone to stay seated while at the gate with the door open. As unfortunate as the situation became, the passenger bears some responsibility to determine what special assistance is needed and to make prior arrangements.
     
  7. sukn
    Original Member

    sukn Silver Member

    Messages:
    96
    Likes Received:
    130
    Status Points:
    320
    AmericanAirlines posted the following on FT:

    Thanks everyone for sharing your feedback. American Airlines has a longstanding history of involvement in assisting our military personnel, both active and retired, as well as our customers with disabilities.

    We have apologized to Ms. Wilcox for her discomfort and overall experience with us. However, American has investigated and we have learned that our flight attendants offered an onboard wheelchair for Ms. Wilcox to use in order to access the aircraft lavatory, as well as offering her personal assistance. She declined that in favor of her own wheelchair. Unfortunately, her personal wheelchair was in the cargo hold of the aircraft, and flight attendants reminded it would take some time to be unloaded and brought up to her. Nonetheless, Ms. Wilcox insisted on waiting for her own wheelchair.

    If you have any questions, please direct them to us. Thank you!
     
  8. ceieoc

    ceieoc Silver Member

    Messages:
    195
    Likes Received:
    210
    Status Points:
    420
    I replied to the American Airlies representative on FlyerTalk, with the following: "Thank you for the support at American Airlines in assisting all our military personnel and, especially for the special recognition to our Nation's Medal of Honor Recipients with AAdvantage Executive Platinum® membership, ConciergeKey status and Admirals Club memberships. That is way cool.

    As the DOT writes, "The carrier or the passenger with a disability could seek a volunteer from among other passengers on the flight to act as the attendant. The carrier could provide a free ticket to an attendant of the passenger's choice for that flight segment"
    Please let us know what we need to do, if we are on the same flight, to register to volunteer to help a disabled traveling passenger and act as their attendant."

    From KWTX News, click here to view the video of the stranded disabled veteran Ms. Wilcox.
     
    zpaul likes this.
  9. Skye1
    Original Member

    Skye1 Silver Member

    Messages:
    522
    Likes Received:
    624
    Status Points:
    720
    I'm uncomfortable with the news clip. I find it a misrepresentative disservice to the US military in grabbing footage of a soldier crying over having to go to the bathroom. I don't want to seem ungrateful of the service Ms. Wilcox has given to her country, and there seems to be no reason to question that she suffered her injury in filling that duty. Honestly, if you're just that desperate for a story, catch the tears she understandably would have shown over that, and not this. Ah, but big airline mistreats not only a soldier, but a veteran, not only a veteran but a wounded one, and in uniform no less, ah, that's news. And if the network truly wanted to be objective, they could have waited (and wouldn't have had to wait long) for American's input and not left this so one-sided...oh, but "the airline wasn't immediately available for comment." This rush to get the story out certainly puts Ms Wilcox in a negative light, as it doesn't paint her as being very pro-active in this. And, it sadly misses a great opportunity .... it omits all the things that could have and can be done on board for disabled passengers, and the ways in which disabled passengers assume responsibility for themselves and their needs, as well as an airline's obligations in ensuring air travel is as accessible as feasible.
     
  10. Navysuby3

    Navysuby3 Silver Member

    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    58
    Status Points:
    180
    Either way i am glad i am not the PA rep for American Airlines, as this is a hot potato item.
     
    LETTERBOY likes this.
  11. rwoman
    Original Member

    rwoman Gold Member

    Messages:
    5,617
    Likes Received:
    13,489
    Status Points:
    11,070
    I'm sure after the DL baggage fiasco, AA is fully aware of the possibilities. Of course, people do not note that AA (and the other carriers) generally treat military members pretty well.
     
  12. Navysuby3

    Navysuby3 Silver Member

    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    58
    Status Points:
    180
    Your right, and i have to give credit where credit is due. I mainly fly SA airlines, and every time i am in uniform, i receive nothing but great service and wonderful smiles from the entire staff.
     
    HaveMilesWillTravel likes this.
  13. Skye1
    Original Member

    Skye1 Silver Member

    Messages:
    522
    Likes Received:
    624
    Status Points:
    720
    .....at least she didn't have a cat that got lost in the process. :eek: :D:eek::D
     
    ceieoc and LETTERBOY like this.
  14. Skye1
    Original Member

    Skye1 Silver Member

    Messages:
    522
    Likes Received:
    624
    Status Points:
    720
    ...I'd make the same observation of AA, which makes this story only more strange. I've always seen AA employees treat uniformed military with brilliant respect and honor, and have seen AA give them early boarding, upgrades when possible, lounge access, in-flight PA's ackowledging when several are on board and saying thanks, etc., not to mention the section of their website devoted to supporting them and their families. Kudos, AA.
     
  15. ceieoc

    ceieoc Silver Member

    Messages:
    195
    Likes Received:
    210
    Status Points:
    420
  16. Skye1
    Original Member

    Skye1 Silver Member

    Messages:
    522
    Likes Received:
    624
    Status Points:
    720
    LETTERBOY likes this.

Share This Page