During a safety demonstration of an Alaska Airlines flight that was set to depart Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, a man catcalled the flight attendant and was promptly asked to leave the aircraft moments later.
The event occurred on October 9 and was documented by Facebook user Amber Nelson, a passenger on the flight who witnessed the exchange and removal of the catcaller.
— Sac Town Buzz (@sactownbuzz) October 12, 2016
Before the flight that was bound for Burbank, California, took off, the crew was running through the safety protocol, yet not all passengers were quite aware of what happened during the demonstration.
Nelson shared the details about the event on her social media account.
“But a man in the row behind me changed all that by calling out ‘ooh, sexy!’ in response to a female flight attendant demonstrating how to use the life vest. He was in a middle seat with a woman on either side of him — they were clearly uncomfortable. Just in front of him, the two women in my row and I exchanged uncomfortable glances.”
She then added that she and several other passengers were waiting and looking around to see how the situation would unfold in the cabin.
“Before we could do more than glare in his direction, the flight attendant removed her vest, purposely walked up to him and said, ‘You need to be respectful,’ and started to walk back to her task. ‘He said, ‘C’mon, I’m just playing with you!’ As she walked to the front of the plane, the safety instruction was abandoned and she convened a conversation with her colleagues. Tense moments passed and we saw an affable-looking man board the plane and walk our way. The offensive man behind me started saying ‘I didn’t do anything wrong! I didn’t do anything wrong!’ The airline employee asked the man to gather his belongings and exit the plane.”
The airline corroborated Nelson’s account of the incident on Wednesday, noting that the account by Nelson is an accurate one. Alaska Airlines representatives confirmed that a male passenger was removed from flight 520 on October 9 from Seattle to Burbank prior to departing. In regard to the manner the incident was handled by crew members, the airline fully supports the decision.
“We stand behind the actions taken by our employees.”
Initially, Nelson did not offer additional comment on the incident, but she later indicated that she had to keep herself from applauding when the crew called on the gentleman to lead the passenger off the plane, stating that it caused her to feel honored as “a patron of the airline — and as a woman,” seeing as the airline supported their crew members and those who had felt “demeaned” by the passenger’s “juvenile and exceedingly disrespectful behavior.”
— someecards (@someecards) October 12, 2016
Although it was not immediately known if the actions by the Alaska Airlines passenger were in violation of the Federal Aviation Administration, the FAA does state that no form of assault, threat, intimidation, or interference of any crew member’s ability to complete their tasks is permitted, as the Washington Post shares.
It has been reported that the FAA has logged at least 31 complaints in regard to “unruly” passengers from the beginning of the year up to July 12. The reports logged are only those reported to the administration and does not include security violations. The FAA states that the reporting of incidents is at the discretion of the crew members. In 2015, there were reportedly 103 unruly passenger reports made. Security violations are handled by the Transport Security Administration.
Amber Nelson’s full post can be read on Facebook.
[Featured Image by Ted S. Warren/File/AP Images]