A video that went viral on Twitter Thursday appears to show a mother and toddler getting kicked out of an American Airlines LAA,
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theft because the child with asthma was not wearing a mask.

The airline said the situation was more complicated, however.

Amanda Pendarvis shared on her Instagram Stories earlier this week that she, her mother and 2-year-old son Waylon were taken off flight AA 1284 leaving Dallas-Fort Worth on Monday because her son was having a seizure. asthma and couldn’t keep his mask off his face.

A friend of his reposted screenshots of the images to Twitter TWTR,
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and video clips of the toddler crying as Pendarvis tries to put on his mask, followed by footage of the couple exiting the plane, were picked up and shared on Twitter Wednesday and Thursday, leading American Airlines to the trend as many Readers expressed outrage that a toddler with asthma was forced to wear a mask.

Pendarvis was not immediately available for comment.

An American Airlines spokesperson confirmed to MarketWatch that flight AA 1284 was brought back to the boarding gate and the Pendarvis party had to disembark for “refusing to comply with the instructions of the crew members of remain seated in an active taxiway and wear face covers securely over their nose and mouth. They have been booked for another flight, and there has been no charge associated with the re-booking, a said the airline.

Federal safety regulations require all customers to remain seated with their seat belts fastened whenever an aircraft is on an active taxiway, the spokesperson noted, but the child was not in his seat.

“At no time was it reported to our crew that a member of the party was suffering from an asthma attack or difficulty breathing. Individuals were not referred for failure to meet facial coverage requirements at any time while administering treatment. ”


– American Airlines spokesperson

“After observing a minor in the group lying in the aisle and moving from seat to seat while taxiing, our flight crew made several attempts to tighten the safety requirements,” he said. for follow-up. “Addressing the party, our crew also reminded those in attendance that federal guidelines require customers to wear face coverings at all times on board, unless actively eating or drinking. ”

“At no time was it reported to our crew that a member of the party was suffering from an asthma attack or difficulty breathing,” he added. “People were not treated for non-compliance with face covering requirements at any time during treatment. ”

The airline’s mask guidelines, which follow guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), require all passengers two years of age and older to wear a face covering at any time inside the airport and on boarding planes. The AA spokesperson said the three party members were two years old and over.

Certain exemptions may be granted to people with disabilities who apply to the airline’s special assistance team at least 72 hours before the flight, the airline said, and those exemptions require documents from a care provider. health insurance, along with proof of a COVID-19 Test completed within three calendar days of departure, or proof of recovery from COVID-19. More information on American Airlines face covering requirements can be found here.

This incident comes as people in many parts of the country are divided over restrictions related to COVID-19 as the pandemic enters its second year. While most Americans in a recent Pew survey say the public health benefits of COVID-19 restrictions “were worth it,” opinions on whether children should wear masks when they return home. school, or President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandates for companies with more than 100 employees, have sparked public debate.