Apr 27, 2017

United admits failures aboard Flight 3411 to Louisville

skinnylawyer / Flickr Creative Commons

Ahead of United CEO Oscar Munoz's appearance Tuesday before the House Transportation Committee, the airline today releases a report admitting "four key failures" aboard Flight 3411 from Chicago to Louisville on April 9, and 10 "significant customer-centric changes" to prevent such an incident from recurring.

Key quote: "We can never apologize enough for what occurred and our initial response that followed."

As part of an effort to "begin to earn back your trust," the 11-page reports cites these failures:

  1. "Calling on law enforcement to assist with policy enforcement when a security or safety issue didn't exist."
  2. "Rebooking crew at the last minute."
  3. "Offering insufficient compensation and not providing transportation/destination options to entice more customers to give up their seats willingly."
  4. "Providing insufficient employee training and empowerment to handle a situation like this."

Admitting "[a]ctions speak louder than words," United announces changes that include:

"Increase customer compensation incentives for voluntary denied boarding up to $10,000." "Create an automated system for soliciting volunteers to change travel plans": "Later this year, United will introduce a new automated check-in process ... that will gauge a customer's interest in giving up his or her seat on overbooked flights in exchange for compensation." "Reduce the amount of overbooking." "Eliminate the red tape on permanently lost bags by adopting a 'no questions asked' policy on lost luggage." What's next: NBC's Lester Holt will have a United "exclusive" in the first half hour of the "Today" show this morning.

Disclosure: United is launching an advertising campaign that includes Axios.

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Coronavirus dashboard

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  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7 p.m. ET: 1,094,068 — Total deaths: 58,773 — Total recoveries: 225,519Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 6 p.m. ET: 273,880 — Total deaths: 7,077 — Total recoveries: 9,521Map.
  3. Public health latest: The CDC is recommending Americans wear face coverings in public to help stop the spread of the coronavirus.
  4. 2020 latest: Wisconsin's governor called for a last-minute primary election delay. "I think a lot of people cheat with mail-in voting," President Trump said on the 2020 election, as more states hold primaries by mail.
  5. Business updates: America's small business bailout is off to a bad start. The DOT is urging airlines to refund passengers due to canceled or rescheduled flights, but won't take action against airlines that provide vouchers or credits.
  6. Oil latest: The amount of gas American drivers are consuming dropped to levels not seen in more than 25 years, government data shows. Trump is calling on the Energy Department to find more places to store oil.
  7. Tech updates: Twitter will allow ads containing references to the coronavirus under certain use cases.
  8. U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt: Senators call for independent investigation into firing of Navy captain.
  9. What should I do? Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  10. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

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Government will cover uninsured patients' coronavirus treatment

Azar at Friday's briefing. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

The federal government will cover the costs of coronavirus treatment for the uninsured, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said at a White House briefing Friday.

How it works: The money will come from a $100 billion pot set aside for the health care industry in the most recent stimulus bill. Providers will be paid the same rates they get for treating Medicare patients, and as a condition of those payments, they won't be allowed to bill patients for care that isn't covered.

More states issue stay-at-home orders as coronavirus crisis escalates

Data: Axios reporting; Map: Danielle Alberti/Axios

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey issued a stay-at-home order on Friday as the novel coronavirus pandemic persists. The order goes into effect Saturday at 5 p.m. and will remain in place through April 30. Missouri Gov. Mike Parson also issued a statewide social distancing order on Friday.

The big picture: In a matter of weeks, the number of states that issued orders nearly quadrupled, affecting almost 300 million Americans.

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