A Virginia man claims United Airlines left his 77-year-old mother alone and stranded in a wheelchair at a New Jersey airport for 12 hours.
Steven Williams, says he dropped his mother off at Ronald Reagan National Airport in Arlington, Virginia, ahead of a trip to London, which saw her connecting through an airport in New Jersey.
Williams said he left her in the hands of United Airlines staff, who he says help customers in wheelchairs through the airport and to their flights.
But, Williams, said, his mother was left stranded in New Jersey after she was bumped from her flight to London.
Steven Williams, says he dropped his mother off at Ronald Reagan National Airport (pictured) in Arlington, Virginia, ahead of a trip to London, which saw her connecting through an airport in New Jersey, which is where the trouble occurred
He only found out that his mother didn’t make the flight after a driver he hired to pick his mother up in London texted him to say she wasn’t at the airport.
‘I got a text at 4:30 in the morning saying she hadn’t arrived,’ Williams told WUSA9. ‘I called the airline to make sure she was on the flight and they reassured me three or four times she was on that flight.’
After hours of phone calls, United told Williams that they bumped her off the flight to London and then left at the gate for 12 hours – but he has yet to receive a full explanation.
‘Basically she was left at the gate for 12 hours,’ he said. ‘They offered her a hotel that was miles away.
‘She had to get there on her own steam. There’s no way my mom could have pushed a wheelchair at her age, so she sat there’
Williams said he left his mother in the hands of United Airlines staff, who he says help customers in wheelchairs through the airport and to their flights. But his mother was bumped from her London flight and left stranded at a gate for 12 hours.
Williams said that United called him on Tuesday to apologize and offered his mother a $1,000 flight voucher.
The airline released the following statement on the same day: ‘Providing a safe and comfortable experience for all our customers is our top priority.
We are continuing to gather the facts and get more information, and we have reached out to the customer to better understand what occurred.’
A second statement was released to MailOnline on Wednesday.
United said: ‘While we offered our customer a hotel and to take her there, she declined our offer of assistance.
‘We have since spoken with our customer’s family to express our sincere apologies and we are working with our team at Newark to review what happened and to ensure we learn from this incident.’
It’s unclear when Williams’s mother’s flights were scheduled to take place.