Air Canada has suspended two employees seen in a video dropping passengers’ carry-on baggage into a bin several metres below at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport.
Air Canada spokeswoman Angela Mah confirmed in an e-mail message Monday that the employees have been suspended. She did not provide further details.
A video of the incident taken by a passenger aboard the plane has registered more than one million views on YouTube.
Air Canada said earlier on Monday that the two employees seen in the video “have been advised that their employment will be terminated pending the outcome of our investigation.”
The 1:19-minute clip shows an employee at the top of a set of stairs outside the Vancouver-bound plane tossing carry-on luggage into a bin. A second worker is seen adjusting some padding to cushion the impact of the falling luggage.
According to reports, the amount of luggage on the plane was over capacity and some pieces had to be transferred to the aircraft’s cargo hold.
The video sparked a flurry of viewer comments, many blasting the airline but some defending it.
“I would be horrified if I knew that my luggage was being dropped like that,” one commenter said.
“Some people in the comments say this guy should be fired ... I think it’s the person who came up with this method of loading/unloading baggage that should be fired,” another wrote.
“In light of a recent video posted to YouTube, we would like to apologize for the totally unacceptable mishandling of our passengers’ baggage captured on video,” the Air Canada statement said.
The employees’ “actions clearly contravened our standard baggage handling procedures which require gate-checked bags to be hand carried to the ramp.
“We take matters involving the protection of our customers’ personal possessions very seriously. The actions of these individuals are not representative of the vast majority of our employees who work hard every day to take care of our customers.”
The airline launched an investigation last Friday after the video – entitled “Air Canada baggage fail 20 ft bag toss in Toronto” – was posted on Thursday by passenger Dwayne Stewart of Abbotsford, B.C.