Asiana Airlines has backed off plans to sue an Oakland TV station that broadcast fake and racially offensive names for the pilots involved in the July 6 crash landing of Flight 214. The station -- KTVU TV -- quickly retracted the report on the pilot names andissued an apology.
However, the incident angered Asiana officials, who had threatened to sue the Bay Area Fox affiliate. Asiana executives claimed the incident sullied the carrier's reputation.
"Asiana Airlines had intended to pursue legal action for a regrettable report on July 12 made by local San Francisco Bay Area broadcasting station KTVU," the airline says in statement. "The report referred to the names of the pilots by using racially charged epithets. It profoundly disparaged Asiana, its employees, and all Asians. Asiana deplores the hateful words of the broadcast."
Now, Asiana says it simply wants to move forward and focus on supporting passengers and families. Three people were killed and dozens injured as a result of the crash.
In its statement, Asiana says it "has decided to not pursue legal action as a result of a public apology by KTVU for the report in question and (the airline's) determination to keep all of its resources dedicated to caring for the passengers and family members of Asiana flight 214 and supporting the investigation into the cause of the accident."
Last week, an anchor for KTVU read the fake names - apparently someone's idea of a prank to use racially insensitive names that sounded out distress calls and curse words - on air and then apologized after a break.
Fallout from the incident also spread to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), which fired an intern over the incident, according to The Washington Post.
KTVU said it called the NTSB to confirm the pilot names, and that a person at the agency did so. However, it is NTSB policy not to release the identities of those involved in its incidents.
The call was later pinned on an intern, whom the NTSB said should not have confirmed the inaccurate information.
The NTSB also issued an apology.