Who is responsible for the Baiyun Airport incident due to delays?

Dissatisfied with the repeated delays of the flight, the passengers of Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport (referred to as “Baiyun Airport”) were over-excited last week, causing damage to some airport facilities.

On Monday (10th), after the incident was published online, netizens condemned the violence and accused the airport administrators of working mistakes and failed to properly and comfort the unstable passengers.

Violence should be condemned, and the police’s detention of three troublemakers is also entirely correct. However, the airport authorities have no reason to blame the passengers for their blame. Airlines and airport managers should take full responsibility for the incident.

The flight delay was caused by bad weather. Last Wednesday to Friday, large-scale thunderstorms in southern China caused nearly 300 flights to and from Guangzhou Baiyun Airport, and tens of thousands of passengers stayed in the airport for more than 20 hours. Airport managers said they had taken timely and effective measures to help stranded passengers, while condemning the excessive act of “a small number of passengers” in the waiting area. It is understood that these passengers were dissatisfied with the attitude of the airport, damaging the airport computer, telephone and security equipment, and injured 20 airport employees.

According to media reports, the airport did take measures such as providing drinking water, fast food to stranded passengers, and apologizing to stranded passengers to appease their emotions. In this case, why are some passengers taking violent acts?

The crux of the problem lies in the attitude of airport managers and airlines in dealing with this incident.

The airport did help, but they were just routine and have no sincerity. This fact can be seen in the media reports and blogs written by travelers themselves.

In the event of a thunderstorm and heavy rain, the plane could not land normally and take off. This is very common and will be understood by all passengers. When it was told that the plane was delayed due to the weather, the passengers at Baiyun Airport also accepted the reality and waited patiently for the flight to take off again.

The problem, however, is that the passengers will not hear any further information. A passenger said that "the information on the bulletin board stopped there after 19 o'clock." A foreign passenger asked the airport personnel several times during an anxious wait. Every time they just got a brief English answer from the staff, "just wait for a while."

We have all experienced flight delays. We won't complain because we are told to wait, but we can't stand the long wait, but no one tells us when we can get back to normal. We need the airport to update the briefing from time to time.

However, the management of Baiyun Airport does not seem to do this. I think that the comfort work at the airport is not done well. According to my previous experience in civil aviation, what they often do is to broadcast a notice through the big speaker, "We are sorry to inform you that your flight has been postponed due to the weather...". This kind of notification is always the same, without any details, and it never tells the airport or the airline what action will be taken to solve the problem.

Perhaps, we can sometimes get a sorry from the big speakers: "We apologize for the inconvenience caused to the passengers." However, these recorded words from the horn have no feelings, and anyone who listens will doubt the sincerity of these words.

In the Baiyun Airport incident, if the airport can inform the passengers of the weather changes at any time, the passengers will not become so restless. If the airport has taken some measures to make the waiting less uncomfortable, then the passengers' emotions will not become so excited and not so angry. In fact, the airport does not need to do anything difficult, and a little humanized measures will play a role in appeasement. For example, when a passenger has to sleep on the floor, can the airport send staff to clean the floor? In doing so, the passengers will see a little warmth in their hearts, and the anxiety will be eased. However, in fact, airport managers do not take any such actions.

There is another reason for the extreme dissatisfaction of passengers. Some passengers decided to refund the ticket. However, their refund process is full of difficulties, because there are many refundees, and there are very few counters for refunding business. A passenger who had waited for 20 hours asked angrily: "Why can't I open a few counters to apply for a refund?"

When a passenger wants to retrieve the checked baggage, he finds that it is not easy. The luggage of different flights piled up together, there was no conveyor belt, and the passengers had to dig through them one by one. Some passengers still can't find their luggage for hours.

As the waiting for the flight delay occurred mainly at night, the airport may not have enough staff to help the passengers. But in such an unexpected situation, why can't the airport take some special measures to help passengers? If the airport really apologizes for the "inconvenience caused" to passengers, then more action should be taken to solve the problem, rather than still doing what it is.

“Let passengers travel with satisfaction” is the slogan that Chinese civil aviation companies have repeatedly advertised. However, if the service is not in place and there is no sincerity, then this sentence is just a slogan.

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