United Airlines Safety and Health Code Violations Embraer RJ145 / SEAT 18A

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Apr 13, 2018
4/11/18 FLIGHT UA4160 (Express Jet Airlines Inc. dba United Express) Embraer RJ145 / SEAT 18A
Dear United Airlines formal complaint:
On my flight 4/11/18 from NEWARK to Buffalo (Flight information below) was beyond anything I can describe. I have never been so disgusted, after securing my safety belt I put my hand down alongside my leg and felt the most horrifying feeling (like my hand was in a gutter) I saw two dead bugs in absolute filth, the carpet is coming up and my heel got caught and I tripped getting up to use the rest room. THIS IS THE EXIT ROW, where I am supposed to help and people could have gotten stuck exiting
I am very concerned for my health with having to sit next to filth and my left hand being exposed to it, I had a cut on my finger and after touching that I worry about infection. I initially had seat 19A, BUT I received an alert on my united app (screen shot attached) saying if I purchased an economy plus seat I would earn 1,600 miles. So I purchased an “economy plus” seat and this is what I got.
Just some of my past flights that got canceled on me and I had to find another airline to get home to my kids. Causing me to book flights on Southwest, Jet Blue and Delta at last minute rates. JELY01 Cancelled and trapped in Dulles B5XJVM Delayed and Missed Connection FN1B3B Cancelled (3 of my United Flights were cancelled)
I ONCE received a post card from United Airlines stating they are “reviewing this matter and will get back to me” and no one every replies. No concern for lost compensation, lost miles, but now this goes well beyond anything I can imagine, this is now a health code violation and a danger causing personal injury.
Working in the medial field, I have worked with OSHA and I know this is well beyond a violation of health codes and a SAFETY violation because the ripped carpet where my foot was caught is an exit row


Neil Maley

Staff Member
Dec 27, 2014
New York
Did you send that note to United?

We have company contacts on top of our page. Click on the company contacts tab above and read the information on how to use the contacts and start writing.

What do you want the response from United to be? What are you asking them to do as a result of your letter? Make sure you are clear about what are asking for them to do. They aren’t mind readers- tell them what you want. What I’d want is reassurance they are going to do a thorough airplane cleaning.
Likes: jsn55
Sep 19, 2015
Did you alert the crew on the plane before take off?

I am not sure if a few dead bugs are health code violations... maybe if in the kitchen or galley. I think dirty planes may be under FAA but these are not destructive vermin like rats which chew through air craft wires.

Very dirty no doubt I am trying to think of the right people to complain to.

I wonder if cleaning crew budget has been cut —

This is likely one of the regional carriers doing business as ...
Last edited:


Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
San Francisco
Christina is correct, your flight was undoubtedly operated by a "DBA" a separate corporation doing business as United. While United definitely should be notified of the existence of dead bugs, the rest of your letter looks like a "laundry list" of complaints and will probably be discarded without a response. Dead bugs will not infect your cut finger; I assume you applied a protective bandage before you boarded. My advice would be to write a concise, polite email notifying United of the dirty plane problem and asking for some miles or a voucher toward a future flight. Don't include the attachments (they might cause your email to be deleted) but tell UA that you have proof of your report and will be glad to send it along. Good luck, and please let us know the outcome.
Likes: Neil Maley
Sep 19, 2015
If one looks at health codes there is an allowable amount of insect debris written into most codes and again these have to do with food preparation.

If hands were washed thoroughly after touching the area the risk of infection should be low — I am always more concerned about door handles and such.

I do agree with JSN that this sounds like a laundry list of complaints- the focus should be on this aircraft.

Unless one can point to the actual regulation being violated it is better not to generally claim “health code violations”.

Was there an attempt to get the carpet fixed before departure by alerting the crew or was this only noticed later.

And yes the plane needs to be cleaned no one disputes that and UA should be told.
Likes: Neil Maley