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America West Clarifies Policy on Remarks

July 21, 2002|Times Staff and Wires; Compiled by Jane Engle

America West has clarified its policies after a July 8 incident in which a passenger was escorted off an America West plane in San Francisco and rebooked on another airline after she asked a flight attendant, "Have you checked your crew for sobriety?"

The question referred to an incident this month in Florida in which America West fired two pilots arrested on charges of trying to fly a jet while drunk.

In San Francisco, the airline had cited security concerns for its actions. But last week spokeswoman Janice Monahan said America West erred in taking the customer off the flight. She said flight crews are being instructed to "engage" customers who make remarks related to airline safety "to try to determine the nature of the comment" before taking any action.

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