JetBlue CEO Apology Marathon Enters Its Second Month

JetBlue CEO David “Mortified” Neeleman apologized yet again at a House subcommittee hearing on Consumer Issues. “JetBlue let our customers down and we know it,” Neeleman said in prepared testimony. Nevertheless, the airline industry’s official pariah defended his company against proposed legislation. From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

“As long as I’m head of this company, it will never happen again,” JetBlue CEO David Neeleman testified at a House subcommittee hearing, where he also argued against proposals to restrict how long delayed airplanes can wait on airport tarmacs before passengers have the right to deplane.

Mr. Neeleman testified that limiting how long planes carrying passengers can wait for takeoffs would be tough to implement at busy airports, where dozens of planes can be queued on the tarmac. Such a rule would be unfair to customers who are willing to wait for takeoff rather than return to the airport gate.

The lawmakers’ reaction to the debate was less gentle:

“Baloney!” Rep. James Oberstar, D-Minn., exclaimed, while paging through a printed copy of a Transportation Department official’s testimony.

—MEGHANN MARCO

Another apology from CEO of JetBlue [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]
JetBlue CEO to Apologize for Delays [Forbes]
(Photo: NaniRolls)

Comments

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  1. siggyfloyd says:

    Is he apologizing on behalf of the entire industry? It’s not like the Odwalla apple juice death case or runs from spinach. Just keep the planes from crashing baby.

  2. Pelagius says:

    The lawmakers’ reaction to the debate was less gentile

    “Apology, schmapology! All day with the apologies but do you have time to call your mother? Feh!”

  3. Buran says:

    Of course they don’t believe him. This company has had multiple chances to make things right, and every time they fall flat on their faces.

  4. Nickelking says:

    Despite being in generation Y I’m still finding it tough to believe them.

  5. faust1200 says:

    This guy would have been better off shaking the blame and passing the buck like a normal airline.

  6. kamikasee says:

    @Pelagius:

    I was going to go there, but you beat me to it. My hat’s off to you. That’s the funniest thing I’ve read today.

  7. DogTown says:

    What the airlines have going for themselves here, and they know it, is that Homeland Security now gives them carte blanch to treat passengers’ concerns with total disregard under the new anti-terrorist laws. With this legal coverage in place, there is no incentive for them to do anything different from their current practices regarding the misstreatment of their customers.

    Any passenger that even mildly protests their captivity inside of a grounded aircraft, can be heavily prosecuted for “interfering with” or “intimidating” flight attendants (under Federal Law: US Code § 46504). A passenger can get from 20 years to life in prison for making an airline employee feel bad…versus the 11 hours of being held prisoner on a commercial airliner. It doesn’t matter if the toilets are overflowing, if your kid becomes sick and needs medical treatment, someone needs food and water or is out of their heart medicine. Even just visually complaining by looking at a flight attendant the “wrong way” (intimidation), under the law, they can now presume that you are attempting to interfere with a flight crew and you can automatically be considered a terrorist suspect.

    You will be arrested and then who knows where you’ll end up, maybe in Guantanamo with no habeas corpus rights or maybe you’ll just be disappeared.

    So just remember, when you’re aboard a plane, just sit down, shut up and take it…because you’re not only just another passenger…now you’re also just another hostage.

  8. MentalDisconnect says:

    @Pelagius: -claps- Bravo. My kippah’s off to you.

  9. eldergias says:

    Yes, how crazy that we legislate how long a plane can be on the tarmac before passengers have the right to disembark. I mean, if you can force passengers to stay on a plane for 12 hours, why not 3 days or more? Its not like passengers would ever want to get off the plane and get a ticket with another airlines, or even just go home rather than spend the rest of their lives on the same freaking plane. What happens when we run out of food on a plane because it has been delayed so long? The passengers die! Its great, the complaints have dropped to zero cause no one is alive to complain!

    I’m not saying let passengers off whenever they want, but if you have waited 5 hours in a plane that is going no where, it is time to get another flight. Obviously there is something seriously wrong with the way things work if that even needs to be an issue of discussion.

  10. Pete Gaines says:

    Solution: Fly in and out of airports like RFD that lack the logistics issues of the big boys.

  11. Pete Gaines says:

    @eldergias: You’ve obviously never read much Douglas Adams.