More Passengers Behaving Badly


    ORD watcher
    In The News: More Passengers Behaving Badly, Two Separate Incidents
    May 24, 2010 By Martha

    N.J. Man is Charged With Sex Assault on Passenger on Continental flight from Hong Kong to Newark
    Joe Ryan/Star Ledger

    May 24, 2010 NEWARK- A Berkeley Heights man was charged in federal court in Newark today with sexually assaulting a woman who fell asleep in the seat beside him aboard a flight from Hong Kong to New Jersey, authorities said.

    Ramesh Advani, 63, was arrested by the FBI after the overnight Continental Airlines flight landed at Newark Liberty International Airport, authorities said. He was released on $100,000 bail.

    Authorities say Advani reached under the woman’s blanket and groped her after she fell asleep. Two passengers behind her kicked the woman’s seat, causing her to awake and alert flight attendants.

    Advani is charged with abusive sexual contact. If convicted, he faces up to three years in prison and a $250,000 fine, said Zach Intrater, an assistant U.S. attorney.

    Last year, a Roman Catholic priest who worked in Manville was sentenced to one year in federal prison for groping a 16-year-old girl in the dimmed cabin of a trans-Atlantic jet bound for Newark.

    Texas Man Charged With Assaulting Flight Attendant
    Associated Press

    May 24, 2010 SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — A Texas man has been charged with assaulting a flight attendant in a disturbance that led the captain to make an emergency return to Puerto Rico.

    The FBI says 38-year-old Anthony David Watson of Fredericksburg, Texas, walked to the rear of the Delta Air Lines plane, suggested the attendant enter the lavatory with him and then punched her in the face when she yelled for help.

    Monday’s statement says Watson also punched a passenger who intervened before he was restrained by passengers and handcuffed.

    The scuffle came 20 minutes into an Atlanta-bound flight Friday.

    The charge against Watson carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. Bail was set at $100,000. It was not immediately clear whether he has a lawyer.
    Texas Man Arrested For Hitting Delta Flight Attendant After Refusing Sexual Advances
    May 24, 2010 By Martha

    By Melissa Correa Velázquez, El Vocero – El Vocero de Puerto Rico

    (Note: The original article was published in Spanish, and translated for this post.)

    May 24, 2010 Federal authorities arrested a man, who aboard a Delta Airlines flight assaulted a flight attendant after she refused to have sex in the bathroom of the aircraft.

    Anthony David Watson, 38, a resident of Texas, was traveling on Flight 424 of the Delta Airlines to Atlanta, Georgia with his wife, Karen Lochte.

    The accused was arrested last Friday at Luis Munoz Marin Airport. This was appearing before U.S. Magistrate Justo Arenas, who imposed a $ 100,000 bond.

    According to an affidavit by an agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), about 20 minutes later the plane took off, Watson went to the back of the ship where the staff prepares the drinks and asked the Doris Childress Linn stewardess if she needed help. He also said that she needed a break. The defendant asked him to come with him as he opened the bathroom door.

    Childress, who felt intimidated because the defendant is 6 feet five inches, he said sit down. Childress tried to make an emergency call to the captain of an aircraft through your internal communication, but Watson took it out of hand.

    Allegedly, Watson hit his face to face Childress and asked if he was afraid.

    The stewardess asked for help from a teenager who was leaving the bathroom. Selwood Lashawn Young got scared and ran to the first class area and alerted other attendants of the situation.

    When the teenager ran Childress began screaming for help.

    “Watson then gave Childress a fist in the face and head. Childress fell to the floor and kept asking for help, “says the letter.

    A former Marine identified as Jeremy Quinton Kahun saw when Watson hit the flight attendant in the face. Kahun Watson asked him to calm down and separated from Watson. Then, Watson Kahun hit in the face. Kahun tried to restrain the defendant until other passengers attended and monitored and placed under arrest with plastic handcuffs.

    When interviewed by FBI agents, Watson admitted that since he arrived at the airport checked women to approach them and try to have sex with them. He acknowledged that when he saw Childress was attracted by this and decided to approach her and invite her to the bathroom. “Watson beat Childress admitted that after it refused to enter the toilet,” says the affidavit.

    Jeffrey Alan Heath The pilot decided to return to San Juan because of the situation. The manager of Delta Airlines, Michael Luciano said the ship had to make an emergency landing because it was overweight. Also, Luciano said that this incident will cost approximately $ 150,000 Delta because they have to pay for the emergency landing and the additional inspection of the spacecraft by being overweight, as well as other expenses.


    ORD watcher
    Cross-country JetBlue flight diverted to Denver due to ‘unruly passenger’
    Posted on: 7:32 pm, January 31, 2013, by David Mitchell

    DENVER — A JetBlue flight from New York to San Diego was diverted to Denver Thursday night because of reports of a disturbance on board.

    A spokesperson for Denver International Airport confirmed JetBlue flight 185 from JFK in New York City was inbound to the airport. Officials at DIA indicated the problem may have been related to an unruly passenger, but no details were available.

    JetBlue Airways also said the plane was diverted due to an unruly passenger.

    One passenger, who shot cell phone video of the passenger being escorted off the plane, says the woman became upset because another passenger was moved to an open seat near her that apparently required additional payment, and was not made to pay the premium price.

    That information was not confirmed by law enforcement.

    The plane landed and arrived at a gate at DIA at about 7:15 p.m. MST.

    Cell phone video of the incident showed passengers cheering as the woman was taken off the plane.

    The flight then took off at about 9:30 p.m. and continued its trip to San Diego.

    JetBlue decided the incident was a customer service issue, so no charges were filed. The passenger was not put back on the plane.


    ORD watcher
    Air rage: Passengers 'quicker to snap'
    By Emanuella Grinberg, CNN
    June 1, 2012 -- Updated 1615 GMT


    Editor's note: The Traveler's Psyche is a five-week series focusing on travel scenarios that stir emotion. We're starting with frustration and will wind up on a happy note in June. This week we looked at the airline seat squeeze. Tomorrow we'll have a story on the TSA.

    (CNN) -- When it comes to air travel, just about everyone has a complaint, no matter which security line they use.

    Passengers are tired of long lines, baggage fees and last-minute delays. Airline employees and flight attendants could do without the cranky travelers who refuse to wait patiently, turn off cell phones or stay in their seats.

    Sometimes that frustration escalates into "air rage" incidents that still disturb the friendly skies post-September 11. Reported instances of unruly passengers rose internationally about 29% between 2009 and 2010, following an estimated 27% rise between 2008 and 2009, according to the International Air Transport Association, which represents about 240 airlines worldwide.

    The numbers are a small part of the picture because they only include reported instances. They don't count all the times a member of the flight crew manages to calm an anxious flier or successfully mediates disputes over seats or armrests.

    In the United States, the Federal Aviation Administration keeps numbers on unruly passengers who interfere with the duties of a crew member, but reporting is left to the discretion of the crew. Numbers related to security violations are not included because those cases are handled by the Transportation Security Administration, which keeps its own data.

    But even those statistics may or may not include incidents in which the crew requested that local law enforcement meet the plane and take control of a passenger, an FAA spokeswoman said.

    "Air rage has remained a problem post-September 11, although it is much more subtle than before the attacks," said University of Akron assistant professor Andrew R. Thomas, who keeps track of incidents on his site,

    In his book "Soft Landing: Airline Industry Strategy, Service and Safety," Thomas wrote that in the 24 months before September 11, there were 30 documented cases of unruly passengers partially or completely entering the cockpit.

    "Today, because of heightened security awareness and the reinforced cockpit door, air rage is likely to involve a confrontation between a disruptive passenger and a member of the flight crew or another traveler," he said.

    Airline squeeze: It's not you, 'it's the seat'

    Yet, apart from the occasional Alec Baldwin-size disturbance, aviation experts said the impact of disruptive passengers on day-to-day operations is barely perceptible. Since 2006, when 1,417 unruly passenger incidents were reported to the TSA, the number has fluctuated on a mostly downward trend, hitting 1,218 in 2011. As of May 1, 385 unruly passenger incidents had been reported to the TSA.

    Those figures include passengers being disruptive, intoxicated or confrontational with security screeners, law enforcement officers, airport employees or passengers in airports and on aircraft. It also includes times when a pilot requested law enforcement to meet the aircraft because of an unruly passenger.

    A similar trend is reflected in the FAA's unruly passenger statistics between 1995 and 2011, with the number of incidents peaking at 330 in 2004 before gradually dwindling to 131 last year.

    "More than 28,000 flights take off each day in the United States, so if you look at the statistics, they're pretty small in relation to the big picture," said Kees Rietsema, department chair of business administration at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

    "It's not something the crew stresses about on a day-to-day basis. Their concerns are basically the same as in the past: staying on schedule, weather, congestion at airports."

    From security pat-downs to the behavior of other travelers, a number of factors can provoke anxiety. But usually, the addition of alcohol to the mix is what tips the scales into rage territory, said Ronald Carr, assistant professor of aviation physiology at Embry-Riddle.

    A report released in the United Kingdom in 2008 found that incidents of air rage had soared from 696 in 2003-2004 to 2,702 in 2007-2008. The figures from the Civil Aviation Authority and the Department for Transport revealed that alcohol consumption and smoking were the main factors in nearly 63% of reported incidents, and 78% of cases involved male passengers.

    Americans of a certain age might recall a time when airlines were the gold standard of customer service, when champagne flowed freely and every passenger received a hot meal. It was also the era when air travel was strictly the domain of the wealthy and business passengers, and family travel was reserved for the most special of occasions.

    The golden days of air travel: How glorious were they?

    Service began to deteriorate with the deregulation of the industry in 1978 and continued into the 1990s with the arrival of bargain airlines, airline industry expert Joyce Hunter wrote in her book, "Anger in the Air." Airlines across the board were forced to cut prices to keep up, leading to cutbacks in service and amenities that had defined the golden era of air travel.

    The term "air rage" entered the public consciousness in the 1990s, spurred by a rash of incidents, culminating in the death of Jonathan Burton in 2000 at the hands of fellow passengers attempting to restrain him as he rushed the cockpit door.

    Between 1994 and 1997, the number of air rage incidents reported around the world had more than quadrupled from 1,132 to 5,416. By 2000, the number of air rage incidents in the United States topped 10,000, Hunter said in her book.

    "(September 11) has compounded the growing epidemic of passenger rage, while making it more urgent than ever that airlines around the world find ways to prevent it," Hunter said.

    "Airlines used to brag of 'something special in the air.' On September 11, that 'something' turned into a toxic mix of fear and anger that would slowly seep into the hearts and minds of airline travelers and personnel alike, further eroding the civility of travel that was once an integral part of the industry's culture," she wrote.

    The number of incidents appeared to dwindle in the years following September 11, only to return to an upswing in the mid-2000s. In 2010, the International Air Transport Association asked the U.N. body representing the world's aviation regulators to take a look at management of unruly passengers in light of evidence that most rarely face official action.

    "It's a matter of getting the contracting states around the table and acknowledging this is a serious issue: that the number of unruly passengers is on the rise and it needs to be decided how countries address this," Steve Lott, former International Air Transport Association head of corporate communications in North America, told Orient Aviation magazine in 2010.

    Flight attendant Heather Poole has witnessed firsthand growing frustration among passengers in the past decade, and she said it's worse than ever.

    "Passengers are far less patient today than ever before. This makes them quicker to snap," said Poole, author of "Cruising Attitude."

    "Before September 11, if we asked passengers to remain seated to let those with tight connections to get off first, people would stay seated. Now no one cares. People practically push each other over to get off and on the plane. It's sad to see."

    Cell phones and alcohol tend to be the most common triggers of confrontations with passengers. In the past decade, training has focused on the cabin crew's role in defusing a situation to avoid the need for drastic action, such as diverting a plane or calling law enforcement to meet the aircraft, she said.

    Flight attendants are compelled to respond more quickly to a potential threat but also to do whatever it takes to keep the situation from escalating.

    "We have to be more patient than ever before. It's not easy. We're human, too," she said. "When you're trapped in a tube at 30,000 feet, we can't call the cops or the fire department if need be. It's just you and me.

    "That's why it's always best to remove a potential problem before the flight takes off. If you really must freak out, do so when we're safe and sound on the ground. No one wants to divert a flight."

    Frustration is far from the only emotion travel inspires. We want to hear about your greatest travel moments, whether serendipitous or carefully planned. What sticks out to you as your biggest travel success? Share your stories below for possible inclusion in an upcoming story.


    ORD watcher
    10 ways to get kicked off a plane
    by The Fabolous Life Of A Flight Attendant on Friday, January 25, 2013 at 3:43am ·

    Don’t feel like flying? Want to go back to the terminal instead?

    Then just employ one of the following techniques to ensure you won’t be taking off any time soon. introduces 10 ways to get yourself booted off-board.

    1. Don’t switch off your phone when told
    The reasons behind disabling electronic devices may be an oft-disputed issue amongst passengers, but if you want to be thrown off a plane, be sure to blatantly refuse to disable your mobile, iPad or Kindle during take-off and landing.

    Ejected: Actor Alec Baldwin was sent packing from an American Airlines’ flight for refusing to turn off his smart phone. Incensed that his game of ‘Words with Friends’ had been interrupted, he made off to the toilet where he tried to continue playing the scrabble-like app. Staff had words with Mr Baldwin and he was duly removed from the plane.

    2. Be too big to fit into a single seat (and don’t pay for two)
    The airline ‘fat tax’ debate is a long-running contentious issue, but most airlines’ rules state that if you can’t comfortably fit into a single seat with the arm rests down – you’ll need to buy two seats.

    Ejected: Kevin Smith, Hollywood director of cult classics: Clerks, Mallrats and Chasing Amy, was removed from a Southwest Airline’s flight after staff claimed he couldn’t fit in the seat. The unfortunate Kevin had in fact purchased two seats to comply with Southwest’s seating policy, but had then taken an earlier flight which had only one seat left. A tirade of twitter abuse aimed @SouthwestAirlines followed.

    3. Wear a t-shirt with swear words on it
    You don’t have to be verbally obnoxious to face the wrath of cabin crew. Just purchase an edgy t-shirt with a swear word or two and it could be enough to ensure you’re not flying anywhere.

    Ejected: American Airlines prevented a woman from boarding her connecting flight in May 2012 because she was wearing a t-shirt that said: “If I wanted the government in my womb, I’d f**k a senator’. [NOTE: the f-word was not censored]. The woman was told that her t-shirt could cause discomfort or offense to others.

    4. Get amorous at altitude
    Becoming a member of the Mile High Club is a risky business in more ways than one. Lovers could be charged with ‘outraging public decency’, as well as being booted off the flight – although few have actually ever been caught in the act.

    Ejected: Actress Leisha Hailey was sent packing from a Southwest Airlines flight for what she claimed was a result of kissing her girlfriend onboard. Hailey claims she was discriminated against – being a lesbian and all – but Southwest say other passengers were complaining about her ‘excessive’ behaviour.

    5. Ensure your kids are ‘unruly’
    Travelling with youngsters is hard. Little ones don’t always want to sit quietly for hours on end in a confined area, without kicking the seat in front, screaming, and generally annoying other passengers. However, if your child refuses to play ball, you and your offspring could get kicked off.

    Ejected: Alaska Airlines ordered a screaming toddler (and his father) off a plane because the child got in a strop and refused to sit properly during take-off after being told to switch off his iPad.

    6. Make sexist comments about the female pilot
    If you find out that your pilot is a woman, make a sexist joke along the lines of ‘women drivers…’ and be sure your joke is heard by the cabin crew (preferably female ones). It’s a sure fire way to get your sorry ass booted back to the boarding gate.

    Ejected: A man flying on Trip Airline in Brazil was escorted off the plane, accompanied by the booing of his fellow passengers, after he launched into a sexist rant about the female pilot. He was reported to have shouted: “someone should have told me the captain was a woman!”.

    7. Wear trousers that expose your bottom cleavage
    Be warned hipsters: no one wants to see your botty-crack! In a recent Skyscanner survey, men exposing their ‘builder’s bum’ was one of the most offensive things you can do on a plane. So if you want to risk getting the boot, ensure your trousers sit like a baggy nappy.

    Ejected: Green Day front man Billie Joe was due to fly to Burbank with Southwest Airlines, but refused to pull up his low-slung trousers. The punk rock star and his travelling companions were both removed from the flight.

    8. Peeing into a bottle – rather than the toilet
    If you want to save yourself a trip to the toilet, and get kicked off the flight at the same time, then just whip out your winkie and have a wizz in a bottle. To guarantee you get the boot, make sure some of the wee-wee goes on the floor.

    Ejected: French Actor Gerard Depardieu was sent back to the terminal with this ‘tail’ between his legs, after a pre-boarding booze-up meant he was bursting for a wee at take-off time. The 62 year old just couldn’t hold it in, and relieved himself into a bottle, but his aim was off and some of his widdle went on the floor.

    9. Be an abusive idiot
    Ensure you won’t reach your final destination by being rude and obnoxious to fellow passengers and staff. For an absolute guarantee that you’ll be ejected, threaten them with fisticuffs.

    Ejected: Liam Gallagher, Oasis front man, was banned for life from Cathay Pacific after flying into a rock ‘n’ roll (with it) tantrum which included loutish behaviour and threatening staff and other passengers. Perhaps he should have listened to his brother’s advice: ‘Don’t look back in anger’.

    10. Make any mention of bombs
    Following 9/11, any hint, (even in blatantly obvious jest), of an explosive device will get you ejected quick-sharpish. Bombs just ain’t funny anymore.



    ORD watcher
    Sunwing airline may sue Canadian family after flight diverted to Bermuda for alleged smoking
    By The Canadian Press February 5, 2013


    A Sunwing plane was diverted to Bermuda because a family was openly smoking in their seats

    HALIFAX - A Canadian tour operator says it's considering suing a Cape Breton family for the estimated $40,000 cost of a flight diversion to Bermuda caused by what it claims was unruly behaviour and smoking during the trip.

    Daryl McWilliams of the Sunwing Travel Group says the plane was flying from Halifax to the Dominican Republic and was forced to make an emergency landing at L.F. Wade International Airport in Hamilton, Bermuda, on Friday.

    McWilliams said the airline had to put up 180 passengers overnight and bring in a mechanic — and it may try to recover those costs in a civil action.

    He said from Toronto that the airline decided to land because flight attendants believed the family was smoking. He said he understood it was done openly. However, a charge of smoking on the aircraft was denied by a family member and then dropped.

    The plane resumed its journey on Saturday afternoon.

    But three members of a four-person family were arrested by the Bermuda police and appeared in Magistrates' Court in Hamilton, Bermuda, to face charges on Monday.

    Prosecutor Carrington Mahoney alleged that David McNeil Sr., 54, Donna McNeil, 52, and David McNeil Jr., 22, disobeyed orders to return to their seats after a dispute with flight attendants about using the lavatories during takeoff.

    The court heard that minutes into the flight, the younger David McNeil rose from his seat to use the washroom.

    Prosecutors said crew members asked him to return to his seat and told him that he was not allowed to walk around the cabin until the captain had turned off the seatbelt sign.

    Prosecutors alleged the father also attempted to access the washroom and was also instructed to return to his seat. The court heard they were then joined by Donna McNeil, who asked that her son be allowed to use the toilet.

    When the seatbelt sign was deactivated, the son used the washroom and returned to his seat. Prosecutors said the father then went into the washroom, cursing at a flight attendant while doing so.

    Prosecutors also said that two hours later, a crew member noticed David McNeil Jr. leaving a washroom smelling strongly of cigarette smoke.

    The court heard that after an unsuccessful search for a cigarette butt in the washroom, the crew made the decision to divert the flight to Bermuda to remove the family.

    The father pleaded guilty to behaving in a disorderly manner by using abusive and offensive language, while Donna McNeil pleaded guilty to disobeying a lawful order by a flight attendant.

    David McNeil Jr. denied a charge of smoking on the aircraft, while he and his father both denied disobeying a lawful order.

    The Crown elected to offer no evidence on the matters which the defendants denied, and the smoking charges were dropped.

    While the family members remained silent, lawyer Victoria Pearman said that the trip was a family vacation gone awry and that tensions were high because of delays in the flight's departure.

    She said McNeil Jr. needed to use the restroom "urgently" and the family found the cabin crew's response "heavy handed".

    "It just seems that this could have all been done another way," she said. "Even though all offences before this court are serious, given the human element of this, the court may consider that this is a one off and unlikely to happen again."

    Senior Magistrate Archibald Warner fined David McNeil Sr. and Donna McNeil $500 each for their offences, ordering that the fines be paid immediately or they would could face up to 10 days in prison.


    ORD watcher
    Passenger accused of groping Spirit Airlines flight attendant
    A. Pawlowski NBC News contributor

    April 9, 2013 at 3:39 PM ET

    A passenger who allegedly groped a flight attendant on a plane and boasted that he could show her “a better time than work” is grounded for the near future and facing serious charges.

    The incident happened on Friday on board a Spirit Airlines flight en route from Las Vegas to Denver.

    The passenger, Evan Nathaniel Castle of Thornton, Colo., has denied causing any trouble but witnesses said he began screaming obscenities after having a few drinks, according to the criminal complaint filed Monday in U.S District Court.

    A flight attendant then asked him to stop and quiet down, but he refused and told her, “You should give me your number” and “I should date you,” court documents say.

    The passenger then allegedly told another flight attendant, “You’re (expletive) beautiful”, “I can show you a better time than work,” and “Blow off work and come with me.”

    The crew member ignored the comments, but as she passed Castle’s seat while making a final check of the cabin before landing he “grabbed the right cheek of her buttocks and said, ‘Oh sexy,’” according to the criminal complaint.

    The flight attendant later told the FBI agent who showed up to meet the plane that she felt violated and disgusted.

    For his part, Castle, 24, denied making a pass at either of the flight attendants, according to the criminal complaint. This was his first time flying, he told authorities, adding that he is married and has children.

    Castle said he was served four shooters of Tanqueray gin on the plane, but didn’t get drunk. He never touched the flight attendant who complained, he said, according to court documents.

    Castle was arrested when the plane landed at Denver International Airport and held in custody over the weekend. He was released on a personal recognizance bond Monday, but is not allowed to drink alcohol or fly while his case is pending, said Jeff Dorschner, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office in Denver.

    Castle is accused of abusive sexual contact on an aircraft. If convicted, he faces up to two years in federal prison and a fine of up to $250,000. He is next due in court on May 6 for a preliminary hearing.

    Heather Poole, a veteran flight attendant for a major U.S. airline, has seen her share of passengers acting out on flights, though she says the misbehavior has changed over the years.

    “Today, passengers are more likely to get aggressive with us than touchy feely in a sexual way. Not to say it doesn't happen,” said Poole, author of “Cruising Attitude: Tales of Crashpads, Crew Drama, and Crazy Passengers at 35,000 Feet.”

    “Recently, a female passenger hit me on the butt hard as I was passing by. She (was) angry because I stepped on her toe.”

    A male passenger once asked Poole if he could lick her, she said. “The answer was no. No written warning was issued.”

    When confronted with a flier who seems to have amorous intentions, Poole says she stops serving alcohol and removes herself from the situation by sending in another flight attendant to deal with the passenger. Most of the time that's all it takes, she said.

    “Trust me, there are some passengers who might live a lot longer if they keep their hands off certain flight attendants,” Poole added.


    ORD watcher
    Galley Gossip: Pilot sexually harassed by a passenger!

    by Heather Poole (RSS feed) on Oct 25th 2011

    Dear Heather, I have to share this with you. I'm a pilot and I was sexually harassed last night. While jump-seating home, the lead flight attendant calls the cockpit and says a passenger thinks one of the flaps is out of position. The captain sends me back to check the wings. I squeeze into the fully occupied exit row to peer out the window. While looking out the window, a female passenger sitting in the middle seat puts her hands on my butt. Her friend then shouts, "Woo, get some!" Passengers nearby all start laughing. Anyway, turns out what the initial passenger saw and thought was a problem were the outboard ailerons on the wings of the Super 80. One was up and the other was down. This is normal while on the ground. Anyway, I returned to the cockpit and told the pilots what just happened and we all had a good laugh. I should mention the Captain was female! Thought you'd find it funny! - Bob (the singing pilot)

    My first thought when I read Bob's letter was, wow! What kind of person places their hands on a pilot's you-know-what and yells out something like that.

    Just to be fair, I later on found myself yelling out the exact same phrase several times throughout the course of my day. I couldn't help it! And each time my voice become lower and before I knew it I had developed this southern accent, kind of like that famous redneck comedian I can't remember the name of. Next thing I knew I was visualizing it, the whole exit row groping, only it was I who slapped the pilots and a few lucky passengers as I passed them in the terminal. Mmm hmm, get it girl!

    NOTE: I would NEVER do something like that in real life!

    Now back to Bob.

    The woman who slapped him was somewhat attractive, at least that's what Bob said. He only told me this because I asked. I asked because I wanted to know what she looked like so I - er, we! - could visualize this better. Not that any of this matters, because what matters, really matters, is how the woman made Bob feel. Not good.

    "I was flattered and a little embarrassed. And humored. Cause it was funny. I mean my butt was kind of in her personal space. She had the shot......she took it. So let's just say I was 'Flambumored.'"

    At least Bob now kinda-sorta knows what it's like to be a flight attendant, if only for a few seconds, and for just one squeeze.

    When I asked Bob to explain EXACTLY how it all went down so we could learn from his experience, he said, "I told the passengers in the exit row I needed to get in there to check the wings and that they could either get up or let me crawl over them. They all opted for the latter."

    And there's the red flag.

    Let this be a lesson to all pilots. Do not, I repeat, do not climb over passengers! Do what a flight attendant would do and let them step out of their row and into the aisle instead of wedging yourself on top of them.

    All kidding aside, please do not poke, prod, pull or slap the crew. Trust me - there are quite a few touchy feely passengers who will live a whole lot longer if certain flight attendants (and pilots!) are left alone.


    ORD watcher
    3:27pm UK, Wednesday 13 November 2013
    Passenger 'Threatened To Kill' Air Steward
    A plane heading from Pakistan to Manchester was forced to make an emergency landing after threats from a passenger, a court hears.

    A passenger on a flight diverted in a mid-air security alert has told a court that the man at the centre of the scare twice told a steward he was going to kill him.
    Tayyab Subhani, 30, and Mohammed Safdar, 42, were arrested on May 24 after a Boeing 777 heading to Manchester was forced to make an emergency landing at Stansted Airport in Essex.
    The men, who are from Lancashire, deny endangering the safety of an aircraft by threatening to harm crew and passengers and threatening to blow up the plane.
    Prosecutors told the trial at Chelmsford Crown Court, in Essex, that neither man was a terrorist or extremist but cabin crew had been forced to take his threats seriously.
    Giving evidence, fellow passenger Ferzana Rana said Safdar told a steward "I'm going to kill you" twice in Urdu.
    She said she had been flying home from Pakistan on flight PK709 with her husband and two young children.
    During the flight Safdar became abusive towards cabin crew and refused to return to his seat, she said.

    The flight was diverted to Stansted

    Mrs Rana said Safdar spoke in a mix of English and Urdu as the confrontation escalated.
    She added: "He was swearing in Urdu and a lot of the words and language were not something anybody would want to repeat."
    Asked by Simon Mayo QC, representing Safdar, if the steward had taken the remarks seriously, she said: "No, it was just an idiotic remark."
    She added: "Later on, the steward asked me to confirm what I had heard and asked me whether I had heard the word bomb.
    "I hadn't heard that word or anything that might suggest the presence of a bomb."
    She added that, once on the ground, many of the passengers expressed annoyance that the flight had been diverted over a "trivial incident".
    The first reference she heard to a bomb came after an announcement was made informing those on-board that the flight had been diverted.
    Mrs Rana said: "I heard the men say jokingly between themselves 'I bet they think there's a bomb on the plane'."
    Safdar, a married father of three, of Hallam Crescent, and Subhani, of Townley Street, both in Nelson, Lancashire, claim the allegations are made up and that cabin crew encouraged passengers to corroborate their story.
    The pilot, who described the incident as the most serious of his career, contacted UK air traffic control and was instructed to begin emergency procedures, the court heard.
    Typhoon fighter jets were scrambled to intercept the flight.
    Once on the ground, the aircraft was surrounded by armed police and a full-scale security alert was called.
    The men were arrested and hundreds of passengers were forced to remain on board until investigators established there was no danger.
    The trial is expected to last five weeks.


    ORD watcher
    Posted: 5:54 p.m. Friday, Nov. 22, 2013
    Video shows man’s violent outburst after plane lands in Atlanta
    By Alexis Stevens

    The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

    For nearly an hour and a half, a man aboard a flight from Fort Lauderdale to Atlanta on Friday morning threw things at passengers and had verbal outbursts, a Spirit Airlines pilot told police.
    But after the flight landed around 9:30 a.m., the man’s outburst forced officers to physically remove him from the plane, according to another passenger’s video posted on YouTube.

    “There’s a bomb on the plane,” the man yelled.

    When officers asked the man to get off the plane, the man threatens to blow the plane up, while yelling obscenities, the video shows. Two Atlanta police officers removed the man, whose name was not released, from the plane before placing him in handcuffs and transporting him to the hospital, according to police.

    Investigators believe the man was suffering from mental illness and was possibly having a psychotic outbreak aboard the plane. No charges were filed against the man, police said.
    No one was injured and no explosive devices were located, according to police.


    Cheers as passenger attacks air crew
    Incidents of rage on flights between the city and the mainland are on the rise, as witness tells of passenger who punches stewardess

    Kate Whitehead, Tuesday, 26 March, 2013

    Violent attacks on cabin crew during flights between Hong Kong and the mainland are becoming so common they often go unreported, it has emerged.
    The threat posed by unruly passengers and a mob mentality was highlighted on Thursday, after a physical and verbal attack on a flight attendant was loudly cheered and applauded by others on board.
    British business executive Graham Fewkes, who was on flight HX162, said the attack on the Hong Kong Airlines stewardess happened while the plane sat for six hours on the tarmac at Sanya Airport, Hainan, waiting for flight clearance.
    He said that four hours into the delay, an elderly mainland passenger's frustration boiled over.
    "He went completely mental and stormed up the plane and into the business class. I heard a punch and looked up and he was attacking the stewardess," said Fewkes, who travels to Sanya regularly for work and was on the flight's business class.
    "What surprised me was that passengers were applauding as the man was hitting her. It was a crescendo of noise coming down the plane," he said.
    Fewkes and another Western businessman pulled the man off the stewardess and eventually the man calmed down and was allowed to return to his seat.
    None of the airline staff members made any attempt to remove him from the plane.
    "We were still on the tarmac, so they could have kicked him off the plane, but they didn't," said Fewkes.
    The airline said it had not received a crew report on "any case involving physical assault on HX162" on Thursday.
    Last August, the airline reported an average of three incidents of disruptive passengers every week.
    To deal with such incidents, Hong Kong Airlines cabin crew receive compulsory training in Wing Chun, a martial art.
    The airline's corporate communications department said its flight attendants have been given basic Wing Chun training since May 2011 to boost their health and strength, and to give them more confidence to deal with emergencies on planes.
    Katherine Cheung, an instructor at the Wing Chun Union in Wan Chai, said recruits undergo six hours of training.
    "We teach them basic self-defence movements to deal with unruly passengers.
    "It basically gives them a little more confidence to deal with those passengers. I think air crew these days are facing more of these situations."
    Margie Logarta, managing editor at Panacea Publishing Asia, which produces Business Traveller, said incidents of air rage on flights from the mainland were becoming more common, fuelled by delays caused by the military using the air space.
    Describing the atmosphere on board as something of a "Wild West", she said the insufficient outlets for passengers to complain and voice their grievances compounded the problem.
    Of Thursday's incident, Logarta said: "[The air hostess] knew she might have a lynch mob on her hands if she didn't restore order."
    This article appeared in the South China Morning Post print edition as Cheers as passenger attacks air crew


    ORD watcher
    'Drunk' woman, 39, restrained by JetBlue flight crew after 'scratching pilot when she was refused more alcohol on Christmas Eve'
    Tris Sen, 39, had to be retrained after she allegedly scratched the pilot's arms after being refused an alcoholic beverage
    Sen says she was not drunk and that she has had no prior charges
    She was taken to Broward Jail upon arriving at Fort Lauderdale and released on $1,000 bail
    She faces a misdemeanor battery charge

    By Alexandra Klausner
    PUBLISHED: 09:22 EST, 28 December 2013 | UPDATED: 12:28 EST, 28 December 2013

    A woman was restrained by a flight crew and forcefully taken off of a plane on Christmas eve after being refused one last drink.

    Trish Sen, 39, was on her way from Los Anegles, California to Fort Lauderale, Florida when she exhibited aggressive behavior and was met by local law enforcement upon arrival at around 6:00 am.
    She was then taken to Broward jail and released at $1,000 bail.
    ABC news reports that there was a dispute over what had actually happened on the flight. Some reports say Trish became angry after being refused a drink. Other reports say that she literally scratched the pilot.
    Sen says that she was merely trying to get back to her seat when the flight crew 'attacked her.'
    'I was not drunk.' she told CBS.
    The police report details Sen's interaction with the pilot of the aircraft.
    'He was scratched on both arms while trying to restrain suspect Sen who was disruptive and failing to comply with the flight crew's instructions while in flight. I did observe numerous scratches on the victim's arms,' the police report said.
    Jet Blue also released a statement, 'On December 23, a customer onboard Flt 100 LAX-FLL exhibited aggressive behavior and had to be restrained. Local law enforcement met the aircraft upon arrival. We are cooperating with law enforcement's investigation.'
    Sen went to the Fort Lauderdale court on Christmas day where she showed the judge the bruises up and down her arms. The judge told Sen she needed to save that information for her upcoming trial in Ft.Lauderdale.
    CBS Miami reports that the judge said, 'No, no, no. Don’t tell me about the facts of your case, okay, we’re going to save that for your trial judge.'
    Sen told the judge that he had no prior charges. She will face a misdemeanor battery charge.
    Sen was supposed to meet her family in Columbia for Christmas and told reporters who waited outside the airport for her on Thursday that she just wanted to go home.
    'I would like to please get to the airport, so if you could please get out of my face,' she told the reporters waiting for her outside the jail. 'I think I’ve given you a statement, I would like to find a taxi.'
    One customer on board tweeted, 'Strangest flight yet – red eye, lady goes nuts and starts yelling all over the place, she is cuffed and subdued in the back of the plane…'
    Video: JetBlue Passenger Accused Of Unruly Behavior


    ORD watcher
    'You're a fat, ugly, unhappy, blonde b****': Court hears details of the drunken rant niece of Ralph Lauren launched against flight attendant as she’s fined for an air rage incident that forced a New York plane to divert 400 miles to Ireland
    Jenny Lauren, 41, was arrested in Shannon, Ireland
    * Niece of Ralph Lauren forced airplane to divert from its route from Barcelona to New York
    * She told one female cabin crew member that she was 'f*****g ugly'
    * Lauren warned another that she was about to go ballistic, a trial heard
    * When a pilot intervened Lauren turned on him and called him an 'a*****e
    * The plane was delayed two hours and the diversion cost Delta Airlines £26,000
    * Lauren's lawyer told the court that her client's behavior was out of character

    By Sara Malm and Jill Reilly and Gordon Deegan and Daniel Bates and Ted Thornhill
    PUBLISHED: 09:33 EST, 8 January 2014 | UPDATED: 14:52 EST, 8 January 2014

    The court heard Ms Topping went to brief her supervisor Jennifer Simpson at the top of the plane and Lauren, who was not a first-class passenger, nevertheless followed her through first class and in to the galley ‘at speed’ where she ranted, roared and shouted incoherently.
    Insp Kennedy said: 'Passengers were getting concerned and standing up out of their seats. She told the air hostess she was going to go ballistic and pushed the air hostess hard and she hit her back against the wall of the aircraft.'
    He revealed her frightening experience continued with Lauren calling Ms Topping a ‘f****** ugly, blonde b***h’ and Ms Simpson a ‘fat ugly, unhappy, blonde b***h’.
    When a pilot on a rest break in the cabin intervened he was told ‘you're an a*****e’ by the defendant, Mr Kennedy added.
    The flight had to be diverted almost 400 miles back to Shannon Airport, with the abuse continuing for more than an hour until touchdown when Lauren was arrested by gardai.
    Lauren, dressed in a black jumper, burgundy velvet skirt and boots, did not speak during the hearing and looked back to her friends for reassurance as the details were outlined to the packed courtroom.
    On touchdown officers noted she was incoherent and smelt of alcohol, despite airline crew stating she drank little or no alcohol on board.
    When arrested under caution at the airport she replied: 'Can you say that in English please?' She later claimed she thought she had landed in Spain.
    More than 200 passengers and crew were on board the flight when the air rage incident took place.
    The diversion cost Delta 43,158 US dollars (31,770 euros/£26,269).
    Ms Lauren's solicitor, Sharon Curley, said that her actions on the aircraft were ‘bizarre’ and completely out of character.
    She said Lauren has little memory of the incident despite only consuming three alcoholic drinks.
    'My client is extremely embarrassed and extremely upset by her actions,' Ms Curley said, offering her apologies to the airline crew, passengers and gardai.
    She said when the 'stimulants' wore off and Lauren 'returned to herself' she was unable to believe what happened.
    Ms Curley revealed Lauren - a fine arts graduate with an unblemished record and no other convictions - has previously suffered from anorexia and written a book on her experience and won awards from eating disorder charities for her work.

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