After JetBlue decided to honor first responders in New York City by flying three planes at low altitude over the city Thursday night, critics called it a terrible idea and wondered if the airline had forgotten what two planes flying at low altitude did to the city on 9/11. The New York-based airline described the move as a "flyover salute for our hometown healthcare heroes and first responders" and stressed that the FAA had approved the altitude of the three flights, the Washington Post reports. The planes flew at 2,000 feet, which is only 200 feet higher than One World Trade Center, the city's tallest building, reports the Week.
The three planes circled the city for around an hour starting at 7pm. One Twitter user slammed the move as "frivolous, tonedeaf, and savagely useless," Business Insider reports. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez tweeted: "Nothing like a corporate PR campaign that burns jet fuel at low altitudes over vulnerable communities dying from a respiratory virus that compounds on our preexisting and disproportionate exposure to air pollution to show healthcare workers we care." In a move received more positively than the flyover, JetBlue also announced this week that it will donate 100,000 pairs of round-trip flight vouchers to health care workers, starting with 10,000 for workers in New York City, the Hill reports. (Read more New York City stories.)