Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Continental Express Misdirects Unaccompanied Children

I have always thought parents who sent children by plane without a responsible adult were putting their children at risk. I know there are rare circumstances where it is the only choice, but these are RARE cases. Recently, Continental Express proved just how dangerous it is by misrouting two children in two days.

Taylor Williams of College Station, traveling alone on a Continental Express commuter flight departing from Bush Intercontinental Airport, went to Fayetteville, Ark., instead of her destination of Charlotte, N.C., where her father was to meet her.
The next day, 10-year-old Miriam Kamens boarded a Continental Express plane at Boston’s Logan airport and landed in Newark, N.J., instead of her intended destination of Cleveland to visit her grandparents.
The two Continental Express flights were operated by ExpressJet under contract with Continental.
In a statement Tuesday, Continental spokeswoman Kelly Cripe said both incidents occurred when flights with different destinations were loaded simultaneously from the same doorway and that “miscommunication among staff members resulted in the child being boarded on the wrong aircraft.”
To be fair, the airline took care of the children the whole time, and eventually got them where they were supposed to go. But let's honest here - unless you have absolutely no other choice, sending a child alone on an airplane is a bad idea. Be responsible parent and either go with them, or find someone who can.

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