02 September, 2006

Further adventures in air travel

AirTran Flight 47 1 September 2006

With a larger than normal crowd at Atlanta airport the Friday evening before the long holiday weekend Just checking in to the flight was an exercise in standing in lines, once actually checked in there was some minor gate shuffling after the pleasantly brief security check.

Flight was scheduled to depart ATL at 2122 arriving in San Francisco at 2347, which would mean I’d get home about 3am – ‘wheels up’ didn’t actually happen until 45 minutes after that, not too bad for the typical Friday delays

About two hours into the flight the pilot announced that we were diverting to Denver, seems there was a passenger (male, mid 20’s and looked to possibly be Malaysian) who was behaving strangely, he went in to the bathroom with one of his bags and was in there for a long time and making some strange sounds and refused to come out, then they forced the door apparently was sniffing something and had acted suspiciously moving something between his bags, - for some reason he had bags on both sides of the overhead and had pulled the ear buds off the headphones exposing bare wire – this was several rows behind me so I did not witness that incident until they escorted him back to his seat and then kept getting up and getting in to his bags – I’m trying to find something in the news .

All I can find so far is this http://www.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/europe/09/02/saturday/index.html?section=cnn_latest

Scroll to the bottom

We actually landed at 0300 and I think there was only one baggage ape on duty – made it home at 0600

(From the CNN link above)

AirTran captain diverts flight due to 'unruly passenger'

DENVER, Colo. (CNN) -- The pilot of AirTran Airways flight 47, en route from Atlanta to San Francisco, made an emergency landing Saturday at Denver International Airport after a male passenger "was acting in a bizarre manner," Tad Hutcheson, vice president of AirTran Airways marketing and sales said.

During the flight, some of the 99 passengers on the Boeing 737 became "nervous" after a male passenger collected air sick bags throughout the plane and then walked to the front of the cabin, where he then paced back and forth in front of the bathrooms, Hutcheson said.

"He'd go in the lavatory and come out, and go in and come out and the flight attendant said please return to your seat," Hutcheson said. The passenger, however, did not listen to the crew's directions and the pilot was notified.

The captain then requested an emergency diversion to Denver, where he landed at 11 p.m. MT (1 p.m. ET).

The plane sat on an isolated tarmac while Denver International Airport Police boarded the plane, arrested the man and removed all his luggage, Hutcheson said. The man is being held in police custody.

All passengers on the plane remained on board and, after a new flight plan was mapped and the police searched the aircraft and gave the "all-clear," continued on to San Francisco.

Flight 47 is expected to arrive in San Francisco at 12:30 a.m PT (3:30 a.m. ET), approximately an hour and a half late, Hutcheson said. (Posted 2:46 a.m.)

As per my past experiences the news report and personal observation are a bit at odds but at least some parts jive.

And I’m back to ATL on Monday…

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