WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- Trump supporter is removed from American Airlines flight after he refused to wear a face covering on board.
- American Airlines requires the passengers to wear face masks on board, with the exemption on passengers with medical conditions.
- CNN reports this as the first time a passenger has been escorted out of the plane after this kind of incident.
Brandon Straka was removed from flight 1263 from New York to Dallas after refusing to wear a face mask on board, which is now on the provisions of airline regulations.
“After he refused to comply with the instructions provided by the flight crew, our team members asked him to deplane. He deplaned and the flight departed the gate four minutes late at 12:34 p.m. ET,” American told Business Insider in a statement.
Straka was escorted off the plane and rebooked on another American Airlines flight to Charlotte, N.C., and then on to Seattle after agreeing to follow the airline policies.
American Airlines announced increased security protocols earlier this week as part of the efforts from Airlines for America. The airline company will implement tightened face covering policies starting Monday.
Straka opened a discourse about his skepticism on the usefulness of masks. The passenger recorded his exchange with an airline employee on Wednesday. Following the incident, he posted about the encounter in a Periscope broadcast and posted said video on social media.
He claims that the airline staff referred to the company policy on wearing face mask on board as the law. “Literally the whole staff was standing round me intimidating me,” he said. “This is insane. This is absolutely insane. We don’t even have a choice any more.”
Later, New York Times Reporter Astead W. Herndon contradicted this account, and said the Straka was only “fabricating how the interaction went with the flight attendants for some Twitter likes.”
The reporter posted a video on social media showing parts of the exchange about the airline policy about wearing face masks. The video posted was taken from an airline seat near the commotion on flight 1263.
In the video, a man can be heard complaining off-camera. He points out that the airline employee failed to ask if he has a medical condition that renders him incapable or wearing face masks. A female voice asked this question on the video, to which the passenger replied that his refusal to these policies are for his “sanity”.
Source: Business Insider