It was an awkward moment, indeed, when a drunk passenger caused a Ryanair flight to be diverted, after stripping semi-naked and attacking the interior of the plane. This type of behavior is increasing and causing problems for both passengers and the cabin crew.
It happened last Tuesday on a flight from Riga to Dublin. The unnamed passenger was drunk. He apparently stripped off half his clothing and starting punching the walls of the plane cabin.
The Independent reported that after the cabin crew became concerned about his strange behavior, his fellow passengers had to restrain the man. Following the incident, the flight was forced to make an emergency landing in Denmark.
A spokesperson for the airline confirmed that a passenger had to be removed from a Ryanair Riga to Dublin flight last week for “disruptive behavior.”
“We are fully assisting the police with their investigations and the individual has been banned from traveling on our airline.
We will not tolerate unruly or disruptive behavior at any time and we sincerely apologized to other customers for any inconvenience caused. The safety and comfort of our customers, crew and aircraft is our number one priority.”
In the video captured by one of the passengers (included above), the man can be seen at the back of the plane, minus his shirt, flexing his muscles. According to passengers, he was making peculiar grunting noises.
The man then starts punching and elbowing the cabin walls and eventually leans over the seats of confused and nervous fellow passengers. As his actions became even stranger, a group of passengers finally managed to restrain the man.
It was at that stage that the pilot decided to make an unscheduled stop at Aarhus Airport, Denmark, where the unnamed man was arrested.
According to a spokesperson for the East Jutland Police, they arrested the man as the plane landed and he was in their custody that evening.
The man is now banned from any future travel with the airline.
This isn’t the first incident of this nature and many more flights have been disrupted in one form or another. The Daily Mail quotes the Civilian Aviation Authority (CAA) as saying there have been 114 cases of “disruptive passengers” in the last year. These cases included everything from assaults on the cabin crew to smoking in the toilets, bomb threats, and awkward moments when people attempted to enter the plane’s cockpit.
— The Independent (@Independent) February 14, 2015
According to the CAA alcohol is cited as being a factor in these incidents, the number of which has apparently tripled in the last three years.
According to Nathan Stower, chief executive of the British Air Transport Association, “Airlines set tough rules around the consumption of alcohol and can refuse to carry someone who is drunk to prevent disruptive behavior and ensure the safety and security of their passengers and crew.”
He added that pubs and bars both in the U.K. and overseas should also play a part.
The CAA spokesman continued by saying that the number of incidents did rise last year, but so has the number of flights. They said cabin crew are getting better trained to handle the incidents and will likely report more of them.
“There is no excuse for rude or aggressive conduct by passengers towards cabin crew or fellow passengers on board aircraft. It is actually a specific criminal offence to be drunk on board an aircraft, and also to refuse to comply with instructions from the captain.
We support UK airlines’ efforts to deal with disruptive passengers to ensure the safety of all those on board, and welcome criminal prosecutions where appropriate.”
Airports are now planning to impose tougher restrictions on alcohol sales in the departure lounge in an effort to reduce what they dub “air rage” incidents.
On the subject of airlines and delays, the Inquisitr reported recently on a report that showed runway close calls have increased over the past decade and that “near collisions” on runways across the U.S. happen almost once a day.
A scary thought indeed and one that would make for many another awkward moment.
[Image: Screengrab from YouTube video]