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Sunday 26.01.2020 | Name days: Agneta, Agnis, Ansis

Kaimins asks airBaltic to explain rules regarding police involvement at Riga airport

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUIn a letter addressed to airBaltic CEO Martin Gauss and Transport Minister Anrijs Matiss, deputy of the Latvian Regional Alliance Artuss Kaimins asks to be provided with a detailed explanation for the behaviour of one of airBaltic employees during the deputy’s flight from London to Riga this Wednesday, 13 May.

Kaimins also asked to be provided with an explanation of the rules employed by airBaltic in relation to the involvement of the police at Riga International Airport and the use of state language during flights serviced by the aforementioned airline.

The deputy also wishes to know how the Transport Ministry, as a shareholder in the airline, carries out supervision of internal rules.

«I shall provide a short summery of the flight and the moral damage that was caused to me by the incompetence of airBaltic employees. I am, however, far more worried about the fact that any passenger could end up in such a situation.»

«On my way from a business trip I noticed that airBaltic flight attendants were providing information about transit flights in Russian and English. I asked one of the flight attendants to explain why Latvian language was not used in the presentation. The flight attendant did not answer my question directly. She only noted that her actions comply with airBaltic internal rules. I recorded the conversation (look for it on The recording clearly demonstrates that the conversation transpired in a peaceful tone. We had another conversation about erasing the first conversation.

As a result of the last conversation, airBaltic employees called the police, who publicly escorted me out of the plane upon arrival. Police officers later apologized for their involvement. This incident has done moral damage to me. Because of airBaltic flight attendants’ incompetence, the situation was explained to the media as though I had exhibited aggressive behaviour during the flight,» – said Kaimins.

The deputy asks to be provided with explanations in regard to the following things: what is airBaltic’s position on the use of state language during flights; what is the degree of responsibility of airBaltic employees for breach of rules that govern the use of state language and who exactly makes the decision to call the police in the event of an emergency. Kaimins also wants to know the level of responsibility of airBaltic employees for unjustified decision to call the police and what are the procedures airBaltic uses to resolve matters of providing moral compensation to its passengers.

«I would also like to draw your attention to airBaltic’s odd behaviour in terms of public relations. Janis Vanags decided to apologize on behalf of airBaltic. He did not approach me personally. He merely spoke of unfortunate inconveniences related to the use of customer language. The problem does not lie in the use of customer language. It is good that airBaltic actively uses languages of its customers. The problem is that airBaltic does not provide information in state language. The problem lies in the fact that airBaltic employees humiliates one of their passengers by calling the police for no reason,» – Kaimins notes in his letter.

According to Kaimins, it would be best if airBaltic realized its mistake and apologized to him personally for getting the police involved in the whole ordeal and explained its position on the matter of use of state language. The deputy hopes to receive an answer from Gauss, not Vanags.


Leave a reply

  1. jj says:

    Is this man stupid?

    I am all for the protection of the Latvian language, but how many Latvians actually transfer flights at Riga airport?!! What is the point of giving transfer information in Latvian when the people transferring will not be Latvian speakers?

    Air Baltic make all other flight announcements and the safety drill in Latvian. To get upset over this is just pathetic.

    If I were Mr Gauss, not only would I refuse to apologise, but I would tell this gentleman that he was no longer welcome as a customer.

    God help us all that this person is a deputy!

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