You may recall that last week I questioned whether the $2 million dollar fine to Delta Airlines would finally make the carrier clean up its act and provide some decent service to disabled passengers. I had hoped things would change, but apparently that’s not the case. The latest victim? Nefissa Yesuf, an 80-year old grandmother in a wheelchair. And the story borders on unbelievable.
On Feb. 20, 2011 Ms. Yesuf was scheduled to fly from Atlanta to Dulles, but that’s not exactly what happened. Apparently the Delta employee who was suppose to be helping her gave her somebody else’s boarding pass; someone who was going to Charlotte NC. And it gets worse. Ms. Yesuf doesn’t speak English. So as you can imagine, she was terrified when she ended up in North Carolina. Meanwhile her granddaughter was waiting for her at Dulles.
How in the world does something like this happen? Please tell me.
First off you would think, considering the current publicity, that Delta employees would be instructed to pay extra attention to disabled passengers. Second, how do you give the incorrect boarding pass to a passenger traveling alone? Could the ticket agent not read the name on Ms. Yesuf’s ID or what? It’s not exactly a common name like Smith or Jones. Third, how in the heck did she make it through security? After all, they are supposed to match boarding passes with IDs.
Granted the TSA should have caught Delta’s mistake, but I think that would have been equally traumatic for Ms. Yesuf. Think about it, you’re traveling and don’t speak the language and security detains you. Can you imagine what would be flashing through your mind? Oh and add a wheelchair to the equation. Talk about feeling overwhelmed!
All I can say is, I hope Ms. Yesuf’s granddaughter has the wherewithal to file an official complaint with the DOT. Delta has just got to clean up their act!