United Airlines pilots have released a formal response to this week’s violent incident

If you have access to the internet, then you have undoubtedly heard about — or likely seen — the highly disturbing footage of a United Airlines customer being forcibly dragged off a flight this week. The passenger’s name was Dr. David Dao, and the world has been unified in its outrage over how he was treated.

And now, United Airlines pilots have released an official statement voicing their shared outrage over the incident.

United Master Executive Council — the union that represents all of the airline’s 12,500 pilots — released a public letter condemning what took place on on Flight 3411.

"The safety and well-being of our passengers is the highest priority for United pilots, and this should not have escalated into a violent encounter. United pilots are infuriated by this event," they wrote.

The pilots also wanted to make it clear that the flight was actually one of United’s “contracted Express carriers, separately owned and operated by Republic Airline.” This means that the staff and crew were not technically United Airlines employees, and United pilots believe this is an important distinction.

They also noted that they believe the majority of blame should be placed on the Chicago Department of Aviation (the department that employs the security officers who removed Dao), for their “grossly inappropriate response.”

Whatever your opinions on the matter, we can all safely agree that the incident should have never occurred, and we sincerely hope that United is reviewing all internal policies that led to the occurrence. It also sounds like the Chicago Department of Aviation should be undertaking their own thorough internal investigation into their standards and practices.

Wishing Dr. Dao a full recovery.