Alaska Airlines Offers $1500 as Compensation to Passengers of Flight 1282

Alaska Airlines has announced that passengers on Flight 1282 from last Friday will receive $1,500 each as compensation. In addition, they will be provided a complete refund for their flight and have the opportunity to attend counseling sessions due to the distressing experience.

This week, the airline communicated with all the passengers of the flight via email, confirming the provision of $1,500 in cash, a flight refund, and additional support services. Alaska Airlines made this information public through a statement to PEOPLE:

“Alaska Airlines provided a full refund to each guest on Flight 1282. As an immediate gesture of care, within the first 24 hours, we also provided a $1,500 cash payment to cover any incidental expenses to ensure their immediate needs were taken care of.”

Alaska Airlines via PEOPLE

The airline also announced that passengers will have access to round-the-clock mental health and counseling services. This comes after an alarming incident last Friday, where a Boeing 737 MAX 9’s plug door unexpectedly opened at 16,000 feet, jolting the 171 passengers aboard. Fortunately, there were no casualties, but the situation could have been significantly more severe had the plane been at a higher altitude of over 30,000 feet and had passengers not been wearing seat belts.

This harrowing experience has led to various personal accounts from those on the flight. Several passengers have shared stories of sending what they believed might be their last messages to family and friends. Many feel that the compensation offered does not adequately address the trauma they endured.

Evan Smith, a passenger on the flight, recounted witnessing a young boy’s shirt being forcibly removed by the air pressure and ejected from the aircraft, while his mother clung to him in panic. Additionally, several personal belongings, including smartphones, were also drawn out through the gap created by the plug door. Some of these items have been recovered on the ground since the incident.

Passengers of flight 1282 initiates legal action against Boeing

In response to this event, a group of passengers is taking legal action against Boeing. As reported by the Seattle Times, six individuals who were on the flight have initiated a class-action lawsuit against Boeing in the King County Superior Court in Seattle. They are seeking compensation for the injuries and trauma they experienced during the flight.

Daniel Laurence, an attorney from The Stritmatter law firm representing these passengers, made a statement. He acknowledged the relief that the incident did not result in a catastrophe due to the crew’s ability to safely land the plane. However, he emphasized that the event has left significant economic, physical, and ongoing emotional impacts on the clients. He also noted this incident as another troubling issue associated with the 737-MAX series aircraft.

“Although everyone is glad that the blowout occurred while the crew could still manage to land the aircraft safely, this nightmare experience has caused economic, physical and ongoing emotional consequences that have understandably deeply affected our clients, and is one more disturbing mark on the troubled 737-MAX series aircraft.”

Daniel Laurence from The Stritmatter law firm, representing the passengers

While there were no major injuries among the passengers on the flight, some received medical attention for minor, non-life-threatening injuries after the plane safely landed in Portland. Attorney Daniel Laurence highlighted that, in addition to other forms of compensation, passengers are entitled to seek redress for “emotional distress.” He criticized the $1,500 compensation per passenger as insufficient, considering the severity of the incident, which he referred to as a potential “death experience” or even a “near-death experience.”

Following this incident, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has temporarily grounded all Boeing 737 MAX 9 aircraft equipped with these specific plug doors. This decision is part of a broader initiative by Boeing to update its inspection protocols in response to feedback from the aviation industry. The missing door plug involved in the incident was later found in someone’s backyard near Portland.

Photo by NTSB

In light of these events, a question arises: Would you consider $1,500 adequate compensation if you were a passenger on this flight? Tell us in the comments section below.

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