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Doctor 'dragged like a rag doll' from United Airlines flight because plane was overbooked

By Kathy Armstrong

Shocking footage has emerged of a doctor allegedly bleeding after being dragged off an overbooked United Airlines flight.

The man, who has not been publicly identified, had boarded a flight from Louisville to Chicago on Sunday night when staff said the plane was overbooked and they needed four people to leave.

They offered an incentive of around €750 and a free hotel stay but when nobody volunteered they chose four passengers at random.

The first two people are understood to have reluctantly left but another man - who was travelling with his wife - refused and said he is a doctor and had to see his patients this morning.

Videos taken by other passengers show security appearing to pull the man out of his seat and drag him along the aisle.

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Witness Audra Bridges claims that the man returned to his seat but looked dazed and disorientated and was then brought away again.

The man can be heard screaming in the clip, while someone else says: "This is wrong."

Onlooker Jayse D Anspach claimed: "A couple of airport security men forcefully pulled the doctor out of his chair and to the floor of the aisle.

"In so doing, the doctor's face was slammed against an arm rest, causing serious bleeding from his mouth.

"It looked like he was knocked out, because he went limp and quiet and they dragged him out of the plane like a rag doll."

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United Airlines apologised in a statement for the overbooking but did not comment on the footage.

They said: "Flight 3411 from Chicago to Louisville was overbooked.

"After our team looked for volunteers, one customer refused to leave the aircraft voluntarily and law enforcement was asked to come to the gate.

"We apologize for the overbook situation. Further details on the removed customer should be directed to authorities."

United CEO Oscar Munoz said in a statement: "This is an upsetting event to all of us here at United.

"I apologise for having to re-accommodate these customers.

"Our team is moving with a sense of urgency to work with the authorities and conduct our own detailed review of what happened.

"We are also reaching out to this passenger to talk directly to him and further address and resolve the situation."

Irish Independent

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