United Airlines forces mom to hold toddler during flight after giving seat away

NEW YORK (WABC) -- United Airlines is under fire again for another seat controversy, after a toddler's seat was given away to a standby passenger.

Shirley Yamauchi and her 27-month-old son were on their final leg of an 18-hour trip from Hawaii to Boston.

The two were already on board when another man said he had the same seat number as her son.

Yamauchi was then forced to fly with her son in her lap for more than three hours.

Her tickets cost $1,000 each, but the man flying standby only paid $75.

"I was scared and worried," said Yamauchi. "I'm traveling with an infant, I didn't want either of us to get hurt. I had him in all these contorted sleeping positions and at the very end, sadly, he was standing up between my knees."

United issued Yamauchi an apology, a refund and a ticket voucher.

In April, United said it would raise the limit on payments to customers who give up seats on oversold flights and would increase training for employees as it dealt with fallout from video of a passenger being violently dragged from his seat.
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