Airlines are ill-equipped to handle accusations of sexual assaults.
T raveling on a plane really freaks out people who travel on it for the first time. Some people have a hard time traveling on their first international flight even though they have flown on a plane before. But there are many for whom it is exciting.There is a girl, Dana, who was on her international flight to Cologne, Germany. She felt so excited as if she was the luckiest person in this world. Everything was going well until something very strange happened that made the whole traveling experience traumatic for her. Here is her whole story that will make you question women's safety while on a plane.
Dana was traveling on her first ever international flight. Immediately taking a note of man sitting beside her she freaked out. The man was shaking his legs. She thought it was because of nervousness. After some time the man covered his legs with a blanket and gestured towards his crotch asking her to lay on his lap. She clearly denied.
He started touching her left breast when she was asleep and the cabin lights were off. She felt a sharp pain and jumped off the seat. When she bolted up, he said, "Oh, sorry, sorry."
When the flight attendants arrived, she told her what happened. To her surprise, the attendant confirmed if he touched Dana. The German flight attendant told her that when he approached him, first he pretended to be asleep then begged not to arrest him, saying it was just an accident. Dana's heart dropped upon hearing that.
The flight attendants tried to cover it up, making Dana happy providing her free stuff. Fortunately, one of the American flight attendants told her that the crew had taken a note on the man's profile. She told Dana to report the incident to Lufthansa agent at the gate when the flight lands.
When the plane landed, they let everyone get off the plane. Unfortunately, the crew reported the incident but did not radio the information to the ground. Nothing could be done since the police had not been called to meet the plane and the man and the potential witnesses already got off.
Well, this was just Dana's case. Just think about how many such cases might have got unreported and how helpless every single victim of such sexual assault might have felt. It's undoubtedly beyond imagination.
According to Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants, they have general protocols for assault on a plane but the training and protocols still lack when it comes to sexual assault. Although, Lufthansa has a training for crew members for dealing with aggressive behavior, Dana's case required the whole protocol to be followed.
There seems to be having a huge gap between the training and implementation when it comes to the crew dealing with the incidents related to sexual assault. It seems like the authorities and Airlines need to work on it otherwise traveling on an airplane would become the worst nightmare for women.