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United workers fight firing over security concern

Thirteen flight attendants who were fired by United Airlines for refusing to fly from San Francisco to Hong Kong because of a security concern have filed a federal complaint to get their jobs back. ( Plus d'info...

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Ric Wernicke 4
This may have been nothing more than the human compulsion to leave a mark in the dirt. We all have done it.

I have to side with the flight attendants though. It was United that lost two planes on 9/11/2001. I would have my security sense heightened were I an employee. While I always have my eyes peeled when flying, I appreciate the heightened sense of security from the United crews.

An obvious breech of security occurred if someone could approach an airplane with equipment capable of reaching 30 feet high, and not be detected.

I want employees to raise a stink when safety is concerned. United management should want that too. Sacking people who report a concern that was not properly resolved shows an inability of the station manager at SFO to perform his job, and he should be the one let go.
gboroflyer 1
Why do we assume it was approach of security. It could have easily been done by a bagged airport/ariline employee. Ex: ramp agent standing on a belt loader or K-loader, or mechanic standing on some time of equipment.
matt jensen 2
Probably the one who serviced the APU
Was this not caught on the pre-flight checks by the captain? That's where I'm concerned...
Victor Engel 3
Maybe they're the perps. :) Just joking, of course.
Kevin Haiduk 2
Just my opinion - looks like this was done in Hong Kong.
gboroflyer 2
There are planes flying all over the US right now with things "written" in the dirt or oil on parts of the planes. As a ramp agent I've seen tons of things written on landing gear, engine cowlings, and inside cargo bins. I'm sorry but the flight attendants overreacted. Just because we are in a security sensitive industry doesn't mean we can cancel a flight every time some airport employee or flight crew writes in the dust.
30west 2
I have to agree. It was unusual to complete a three or four day trip and not see something written in the grime on the underside of the jet on at least one preflight. You could tell the mood of the employee groups by what was written.
matt jensen 2
They thought their union would protect them?
gboroflyer 1
*a breach
Victor Engel 1
"The complaint filed with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration contends that the workers are protected as whistle-blowers from retaliation for reporting air safety and security threats."

Were they fired for whistle-blowing or for not doing their job?
preacher1 2
It will be interesting. They complained. United investigated or said they did. They should have flown. End of story
john symons 0
After numerous flights between the US and Asia, I would rather fly Singapore Airlines economy class than business class on any US flagged carrier.I am tired of being served by flight attendants on American carriers that seem to have been prison guards previously.I blame the unions. Delta, when it was not unionized had wonderful service. Now it is atrocious! Bring back the CAB!
matt jensen 1
I told everyone that deregulation was going down the wrong road - no one believed me.
John Atherton -5
I wouldn't fly United on a concern would be the possibility for having one or more of these losers handling my flight....just another bunch of self-centered Union losers.
sstuff -3
Frank L. Mott, a journalist, defines yellow journalism (in part) as “dramatic sympathy with the ‘underdog’ against the system.” (American Journalism (1941), p.539.)

I believe this U.S.A. Today piece neatly fits that definition.
Ric Wernicke 0
Mott was a hack, and simply drew from David and Goliath, a tale repeated in many cultures as it is a basic human feeling.

While USA Today is little more than a headline service, it has little incentive to engage in activities that Mott was whining about in his tome.
sstuff -1
Mott was a Ph.D., dean of the University of Missouri School of Journalism, and Pulitzer Prize winner for his “History of American Magazines.” I’d say he was well qualified to define yellow journalism and definitively was not a “hack” unless, of course, one also includes deans of the Columbia University School of Journalism as being “hacks.”
Ric Wernicke 3
"Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach."

-George Bernard Shaw
joel wiley 1
I merely disagree with your characterization of of the piece. I feel it lacks the lurid sensationalism that Pulitzer used in the late 19th century which, in his race for paper sales with Hearst, led to the coining of the term. This piece lacks color. The early reporting on MH370 would be a better yellow journalism example IMO.
Jimmy Robinson 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Flight Attendants Fired After Refusing to Fly Plane with Mysterious Markings

Thirteen flight attendants are fighting back after being fired by United Airlines for refusing to fly on a 747-400 with mysterious messages written on the tail section.

The attendants were scheduled to fly from San Francisco International Airport to Hong Kong when finger drawings depicting the words "Bye Bye" along with a smiley face and a menacing face were found on the airplane's tail cone.
Margeaux K 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Flight Attendants Feared 'Devilish' Image, Were Fired

The underside of a 747 jumbo jet's tail was coated in oil residue, and in it, someone had written the words "BYE BYE" and drawn two faces—one smiling, one with more of a "devilish" look. If you'd be reluctant to board that plane, well, you're not alone.
Shawn Connelly 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

United sued after flight attendants fired for refusing to be on plane

On July 14, 2014, Grace Lam and 12 other flight attendants, all of whom had been on the job at least 17 years, were preparing United Airlines Flight 869 when they learned graffiti had been discovered on the fuselage. The flight had been scheduled to fly from San Francisco to Hong Kong.

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