An unruly passenger who got drunk and belligerent on a Kennedy Airport-bound intercontinental flight yesterday was subdued by passengers and taped to his seat the rest of the way, according to witness reports.
The passenger, who was on a flight from Iceland, “drank all of his duty-free liquor on the flight,” tried to “choke the woman next to him” and was “screaming the plane was going to crash,” according to passenger Andy Ellwood, who snapped the man’s photo and posted it to his blog.
The meltdown – in which the man also spat on several passengers – began when there were about two hours left on the flight, according to Icelandic news outlet Mbl.is.
Meanwhile, a pilot scheduled to helm a flight from Minneapolis to LaGuardia today was yanked before takeoff on suspicion of being drunk, a report says.
A pilot was removed from New York-bound American Eagle Flight 4590 and taken into custody at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport on suspicion of being under the influence of alcohol.
Airport spokesman Pat Hogan confirms MSP Airport police took the pilot into custody at 7:19 a.m. ET.
The pilot failed a breathalyzer at the scene, but was taken to Fairview Southdale hospital to test for blood alcohol content.
“American Eagle has a well-established substance abuse policy that is designed to put the safety of our customers and employees first,” the airline said in a statement. “We are cooperating with authorities and conducting a full internal investigation. The pilot will be withheld from service pending the outcome of the investigation.”
The plane was delayed for about three hours before leaving for New York at about 8:50 a.m. It was estimated to arrive shortly after noon.