150 passengers trapped on JetBlue 'flight from hell'
A JetBlue flight took off from Fort Lauderdale, headed to JFK, Wednesday night at 5 p.m. It was supposed to be a three hour flight. It arrived at Kennedy at 3:15 p.m. Thursday.
The scene inside the plane was not pretty, as passengers were diverted to Atlantic City. And they were not allowed off.
Eyewitness News reporter NJ Burkett has an Eyewitness News exclusive.
One hundred and fifty people, children and elderly among them, were diverted to Atlantic City and then stranded there for hours. Yes, they are happy to be home. But they are not at all happy about what they went through.
The passengers of Flight 62 arrived at JFK Airport 22 hours after they left Fort Lauderdale.
This really does put JetBlue ahead of other US airlines. They could have acted like other airlines and trapped people on the plane for hours and hours. They could have stranded the passengers and cancelled the flight. Instead JetBlue took a very "outside of the box" approach to the matter, by US standards. It is great to see Customer Service is still a standard at the very least at one US airline. JetBlue learned a lot from the happening in February. Kudos to JetBlue for professional handling of this matter!
OPNLguy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 9, posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 10057 times:
Quoting OB1504 (Reply 3): Anyone notice that this is becoming an almost-weekly occurrence? It's making me fearful of flying into the New York area.
It's because of the over-reporting on the previous 8+ hour AA/AUS and B6/JFK deals, and the resulting retroactive conclusion that seems to be increasingly prevalent that any delay is unacceptable, irrespective of how legitimate the weather and ATC causes are. It's nuts. It's also been a wetter spring and summer, so that's another reason you're seeing the NYC/DC/Chicago areas (all high-density traffic areas) get hammered.
In a perfect world, there'd be no delays, but it ain't a perfect world. People need to be able to differentiate between the "normal" 2-4 hour delays when the weather gets AFU and the 8+ ones (the latter of which are completely unacceptable and shouldn't happen).
Flyinryan99 From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 1922 posts, RR: 11 Reply 10, posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 10039 times:
I have yet to hear anything about NW 12 that diverted to TOL yesterday and sat on the ground 1 hour due to wx and fueling....The media is terrible in just about anything...blow everything out of proportion.
FLYGUY767 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 11, posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 9998 times:
Quoting PITops (Reply 7): A jetBlue flight was on the tarmac for a couple hours at PIT last evening too. Noone was talking about it.
It is probably because JetBlue treats their passengers more like guests than numbers.. The way the people were treated on the ComAir and ShuttleAmerica delays was truly inexcusable. If it weren't for the videos ComAir and ShuttleAmerica would have dismissed the poor treatment of passengers as hear say.
ExFATboy From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 2974 posts, RR: 9 Reply 12, posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 9936 times:
Quoting Pilotdude09 (Reply 1): and if there isnt gate space theres nothing that can be done about it.
Well, yes, there is...they're called "mobile stairs." As long as there isn't a thunderstorm in progress, you don't need a gate to take passengers off a plane.
I do have to question the decision to divert to ACY, though - they've pretty much rolled up the sidewalks by 9 PM. Could be ACY was the only place available, I guess.
On the other hand, there's a hell of a lot of bitching and whining going on here - "My kids are traumatized," passenger Aron Schiffenbauer said. "My son is traumatized. He's been vomiting. He doesn't have any clothes to wear and he's been vomiting the whole time since last night." Unless there's some extra factor that isn't in the report - like, say, the air conditioning was out, or they'd gone several hours without water - I don't see how sitting in a damn seat can be "traumatizing." Frustrating, tiring, boring, exhausting? Sure. But "traumatizing" to the point where the kid was throwing up, even well after he got off the plane? Either the kid has a medical condition, perhaps an undiagnosed one, or he's just a wimp.
(And it doesn't kill you to wear the same clothes for that long. Jeez. Some people are a little sheltered, eh?)
Quoting OB1504 (Reply 3): Anyone notice that this is becoming an almost-weekly occurance?
True, but some cases are understandable - this was weather, combined with a crew timing out. Maybe JetBlue should have scrubbed the flight? Can't really say...sometimes it's a tight call, and all you can do is perhaps load some extra drinks and snacks and hope for the best.
Sometimes it is the airline's fault - the Comair case where passengers were vomiting probably should have been cancelled...normally, you can go with the A/C out of service, the plane will cool off somewhat once you're at cruising altitude. I've been on a few flights over the years that had no A/C. But with the heat and humidity of that day, combined with the near-statistical certainty of major delays, it was probably a bad decision.
I do think that airports and airlines need to develop better contingency plans to pull passengers off airplanes when delays get to the point where the flight's obviously not going to go, or has arrived at its destination, especially if they get to the point where there's no drinking water and/or no toilets. Having a couple of mobile stairs and a few buses in reserve is not very expensive, although people would still have to wait if there's a thunderstorm over the airport. The "there's no gates available" excuse wears thin, especially when we're taking about a plane that has actually arrived at its desination - passengers got on and off planes long before jetways, and baggage can always be sorted out later.
Having said that, I do completely disagree with the "bill of rights" proposals floating around that would set hard time deadlines for when a departing flight has to come back in. As long as there's a reasonable chance that the flight will go before the crew times out, and the passengers have drinking water and working toilets, the airline needs the flexibility of keeping the plane loaded and ready to go.
DENplanenut From United States of America, joined May 2005, 203 posts, RR: 0 Reply 14, posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 9851 times:
Mother Nature is at it again! My mother was supposed to have boarded B6 flight 511 EWR-FLL around 5pm today(June 28), but weather has forced a delay...as of 11pm ET., estimated departure is at 12:06AM! She is taking this flight travel personally since the last time she tried to go anywhere she spent the entire day at PHL and ended up cancelling her trip altogether, due to last winter storms before Christmas.
There is not much she can do at this point except sit and wait.
PITops From United States of America, joined May 2007, 1442 posts, RR: 4 Reply 15, posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 9763 times:
Quoting ExFATboy (Reply 12): I do think that airports and airlines need to develop better contingency plans to pull passengers off airplanes when delays get to the point where the flight's obviously not going to go, or has arrived at its destination, especially if they get to the point where there's no drinking water and/or no toilets. Having a couple of mobile stairs and a few buses in reserve is not very expensive, although people would still have to wait if there's a thunderstorm over the airport. The "there's no gates available" excuse wears thin, especially when we're taking about a plane that has actually arrived at its desination - passengers got on and off planes long before jetways, and baggage can always be sorted out later.
We have plenty of stairs and buses at PIT but then again we have plenty of empty gates for planes to use!
CaptainJon From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 17, posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 9639 times:
Why wouldn't they allow pax off the jet and have an airport bus take them to the gate? That way I could just hire a car and drive myself home, come back next day to pick up my luggage, gamble, and go back home...
JBLUA320 From United States of America, joined May 2002, 3163 posts, RR: 20 Reply 18, posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 9631 times:
Quoting OB1504 (Reply 16): You would think that ACY would be able to find an empty gate or a stairs truck after five or six hours.
I agree with you-- it's definitely curious. If the crew thought they were going to get a departure slot within their hours, maybe they didn't want to risk deplaning. That wouldn't explain the "no gate" excuse, but I'm sure there is far more to the story than what the news will report.
Quoting OB1504 (Reply 16): What I meant by my previous post was... if this is such a routine occurrence, why have the media never cared until now? And, if things are really that bad, why did it take them so long to?
Given that our media likes to capitalize on misery, I think once they realized how volatile these stories were, they went seeking them out! In and of itself, these events are not routine. But the way the media has been tackling them, they will certainly appear that way more often.
Stealth777 From United States of America, joined Feb 2006, 360 posts, RR: 0 Reply 20, posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 9591 times:
not really tied in with this story but its in regards to B6 ops from SFO. All I can say from what I have witnessed is the flights never, ever leave SFO as scheduled (of course I only speak of the times I was spotting at the airport). The flight this morning (28Jun) had a 40 min wait on Txy Lima. It was long enough that the tower told them to hold short of Mike and shut her down.
I know the weather plays a part in all this but, I think I've only noticed it depart once on-time.
Yes there is several variables that play into part of this, but does it seem that B6 gets more news time ever since their meltdown in Feb?
FlyIGuy From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 844 posts, RR: 0 Reply 21, posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 9536 times:
Here at IAD last night combining all the airlines together there was a total of 27 diversion into the airport which 90 percent of the flights were headed to the newyork and philadelphia area airports...not a big surprise seeing the weather in the NE was terrible.
The opinions I post are of mine and mine alone, not of the airline I work for.
Travatl From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 2172 posts, RR: 11 Reply 22, posted (5 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 9504 times:
NO - to all of this in general.
I've worked for airlines for 17 years. After years of defending "operational decisions", these ridiculous circumstances are no longer excusable.
This is the result of running operations to their very limits - with no grasp of cause and effect AND effectual case. The powers that be just assume that this can be remedied in A+B... not anymore. Before the plane went to Atlantic City, where was a duty manager calling ACY about ground facilities? Where was a crew router saying "look we're at zero minus 'x' duty hours for this crew".
"We called 45 bus companies that night". Yeah - and they started calling them when that was the only option (trust me, I know how this shit goes down). I AM NOT saying this is a jetBlue problem - this is how this industry works now, and I'm embarassed to be a part of it.
The mgmt gets wealthier and the employees are expected to fix problems that require more staff, better facilities, better training, and better tools.