In an earlier post on this thread I mentioned “complaints log” that no-one seems to have picked up on:
This arose from a TWA flight to ORD, long delayed at LHR for “mechanical” problems. We taxied for take off and the hydraulics went down & we were towed back to gate. After another couple of hours sitting on the plane I decided I’d rather go back home to Hampstead and fly the next day.
I was told me my ticket would be not accepted (a real cheapo) so asked to see the “complaints log”. Was shown a log in which I was able to write that the crew had informed me the hydraulics were being worked on in difficult conditions by the engineers but they were determined to get the flight away as there were many passengers needing to “get back for the US holidays”. I said that this indicated that safety was not being properly considered.
The result of writing this in the log was that I was allowed to leave the flight and take that a day later without charge.
It was easy for me to take this approach at that time. But if there are serious questions about safety a “complaints log” – if it still exists – could be a useful lever.