U.S. Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank) is seeking answers from Southwest Airlines after thousands of people were stranded over the holidays due to flight cancellations.
On Dec. 30, Schiff sent a letter to Southwest Airlines CEO Bob Jordan requesting information on how the company will address the extraordinary disruptions to its services, including by financially compensating passengers whose travel plans were disrupted.
“Many thousands of people have been stranded, had family plans disrupted, been negatively impacted by missing work or been forced into dangerous situations trying to reach their final destinations. There is no denying that a massive winter storm disrupted air travel across the country, but other airlines have been able to get back on track and rebook their customers. Not Southwest,” Schiff said in the letter. “That’s unacceptable, and this type of situation must never happen again.”
On Dec. 28, Southwest canceled more than 2,500 flights, compared to less than 40 flights canceled each by Delta, American and United airlines. Last week, Southwest canceled more than 14,500 flights – more than 50% of its normal services.
“This has been an unmitigated nightmare for many of my constituents this holiday season. It has also cost families hundreds and thousands of dollars at a time when prices are still rising. Families and impacted individuals must be compensated, and we cannot afford to let this happen again,” Schiff said.
Specifically, Schiff is asking Southwest to share its plans for financially compensating all affected passengers, including those who could not be rebooked, those who were forced to rebook flights with other airlines at inflated prices and those who were forced to incur additional expenses for lodging, meals and transportation. He is also calling for information on how the airline is upgrading its outdated technology and scheduling systems to prevent future mass disruptions, and how it is compensating Southwest workers who were overextended by extreme working conditions.
For information, visit schiff.house.gov.
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