Managing Through a Crisis: When Something Bad Happens, Saying and Doing the Right Thing Are Crucial

This article provides a tutorial on crisis management in the airline industry, based on the experience of airlines spokespeople and consultants to airlines on disaster management. The article describes the British Airways flight on January 17, 2008 that plowed into the ground at the edge of London Heathrow inbound from China. British Air followed the rules, according to the CEO of Kenyon International, a disaster management company. Those rules include action, communication and compassion, almost immediately after the crisis. A former public relations representative for Japan Airlines noted that is important for the airline to apologize, and apologies do not imply guilt. A former airline executive for communications suggested that employees, too, need sure communications as they are the conduit for public information following any incident. The author notes the establishment of the Aviation Disaster Family Assistance Act by the National Transportation Safety Board. The article concludes by relating two incidents involving Southwest where the airline’s response to “mini-crises” served as a learning experience.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Print
  • Features: Photos;
  • Pagination: pp 49-50, 52
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01100611
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: UC Berkeley Transportation Library
  • Files: BTRIS, TRIS
  • Created Date: Apr 29 2008 3:03PM