Scorpion On A Plane: Woman Stung By Arachnid On Alaska Airlines Jet

A passenger on an Alaskan Airlines flight was stung by a scorpion on Saturday, delaying the plane as it was preparing to depart Los Angeles for Portland.

Alaska Airlines spokesman Cole Cosgrove noted that Flight 567 was taxiing on the runway Saturday night when the scorpion made its unexpected appearance. A passenger was startled by the arachnid on his shoulder, causing him to flick it away. The scorpion then landed on an unidentified woman, stinging her in the hand.

Flight attendants promptly killed the scorpion as the plane was forced to return to the gate. The woman was checked by medics following the sting but refused any additional medical treatment. After the flight crew checked the overhead compartments for other scorpions, the airplane departed around 8:40 p.m., roughly an hour late.

Though it is not clear how the scorpion found its way onto the Alaska Airlines jet, the flight originated in Los Cabos, Mexico. It is also not known which species of scorpion was responsible though only 30 of the 1,500 known varieties of scorpion are capable of inflicting deadly stings.

The Alaska Airlines plane was carrying members of Oregon State University’s men’s basketball team when the scorpion made its appearance, as well as the University of Portland’s women’s basketball team and Oregonian reporter Tyson Alger. Posting on his Twitter account, Alger related his take on the man’s reaction to the scorpion on his shoulder.

Oregon State Coach Wayne Tinkle cited the woman’s behavior after the scorpion stung her, asserting that she reacted well to the unusual situation.

“The woman was a real champ. She acted like it was a mosquito bite. They got it off her but the needle was stuck. They had to take her away in an ambulance,” he recalled.

Last October, a U.S. Airways flight departing from New York’s LaGuardia Airport was delayed after a group of crabs were found in the plane’s cargo hold. Though it was unclear how the crabs made their way aboard the plane, investigators believed they were being transported on an earlier flight and managed to escape their containers.

The condition of the woman stung by the scorpion, who declined to re-board the plane, remains unclear.

[Image via Twitter/ Mike Parker]