wirraway
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Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 11:15 am

Thurs "Herald Sun"

Horror at 30,000 feet
Date January 15th, 2004
Source Herald-Sun

Mid-air scare as woman strips on `flight from hell'

TERRIFIED airline passengers endured an hour-long tirade by a woman who stripped topless and shouted they would all die in a September 11-style tragedy.

A passenger on the Virgin Blue flight from Hobart to Melbourne last Thursday said it was the "flight from hell".

But the pilot on Flight DJ145, thanking passengers for their patience, passed it off as an "environmental anomaly".

The passenger, who wanted to be known only as Ally, described the ordeal as frightening.

"Everyone was pretty freaked out. By the time we landed, the whole plane applauded," she said. "We all got off and said, `That was the flight from hell '."

Ally said the woman should have been removed before the packed 737 crossed Bass Strait at 30,000ft.

"You could see that she was really nervous or something, and she just started freaking out a bit," said Ally, who was sitting opposite the woman. "We took off to taxi down to the runway and that's when she flipped out. "

Ally said the woman stood up, put her arms out and yelled: "Stop the plane, stop the plane -- get me off this plane. I've had a vision. I was in a backpacker's last night; you have got to listen to me. This is the next 9/11; we are all going to die. "

Ally, who was travelling with her partner and two children aged five and 10 months, said the flight attendant calmed the woman and settled her back in her seat.

"I said to the flight attendant, `She's freaking me out.' The flight attendant said: `We have to go; it's too much trouble to turn back'. "

After sitting on the tarmac for 10 minutes, the pilot decided to take off.

"They just made a huge mistake," Ally said. When the jet was airborne, the woman "flipped out" again, took off her top and bra, and yelled for the plane to stop.

"She just absolutely went psycho," Ally said.

"She was yelling, standing up, raising her arms.

"My initial thought was (she was a) female terrorist, suicide bomber kind of thing.

"She really didn't know what she was doing when we took off, and her mental state just got worse and worse as the plane was in the air. "

When the jet landed, Australian Protective Service officers boarded the plane and escorted the woman away.

It is understood the 23-year-old woman was released into the custody of her parents, who live in Melbourne. She has not been charged.

Virgin Blue spokeswoman Amanda Bolger confirmed the cabin supervisor consulted the captain before take-off and they agreed the woman was not a safety risk.

"We believe that despite this person's unusual behaviour, it did not affect the safety of passengers or the aircraft," she said.

"We appreciate that her behaviour may have upset guests seated near her.

"We also need to stipulate she wasn't aggressive; she wasn't threatening anybody or the aircraft. "

Civil Aviation Safety Authority spokesman Peter Gibson said it did not appear there was any threat to the safety of

the aircraft.

"It sounds like someone was psychologically disturbed and caused a few problems on the flight," he said.

"The crew had to make a judgment and they made one."

A spokesman for Federal Transport Minister John Anderson said the situation was best judged by the crew.

Opposition transport spokesman Martin Ferguson urged the Department of Transport and Virgin Blue to discuss the incident to determine how best to deal with such passengers in the future

===========================================

 
N754PR
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 11:37 am

We need more passengers like that, just stop the shouting  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
Bush, your a sad, sad man.
 
ual747den
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 11:50 am

That was a VERY VERY BAD call to take off. They should have never left the ground and if I was on that flight I would take whatever action against the airline that I could. I would have been on the phone with my lawyer as soon as we hit the ground. That is way to much to put passengers through. I being a frequent flier would have even been extremely freaked out by someone yelling those kinds of things.....
/// UNITED AIRLINES
 
aa757first
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 11:54 am

"I said to the flight attendant, `She's freaking me out.' The flight attendant said: `We have to go; it's too much trouble to turn back'. "

Too much trouble???

AAndrew
 
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 12:39 pm

"I said to the flight attendant, `She's freaking me out.' The flight attendant said: `We have to go; it's too much trouble to turn back'. "

Too much trouble???


Yeah what a pathetic remark the FA made. So it's too much trouble to care about safety? That plane should have turned around straight away and the pax should have been arrested immediately. Too bad if it turned out this woman was a threat at 30,000 feet then it would really have been "too much trouble".

 
cha747
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 12:48 pm

I'm not a psychiatrist but it sounds like this woman had a psychotic episode and if she carries a diagnosis (like schizophrenia) she may not be charged. Either that, or she could have been on drugs. I've worked with these types of patients to a limited extent...there's no talking them down or anything like that, they just need more meds. I feel sorry for everybody on board who had to endure that...if indeed it was a psychotic break.
You land a million planes safely, then you have one little mid-air and you never hear the end of it - Pushing Tin
 
qantasguy
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From

Thu Jan 15, 2004 3:30 pm

How much more of a distraction do you need to be to the passengers to be removed? If someone here even breathes a word of terrorism at the airport, they are detained. Sure, people may be mentally sick, but there is a place for them. Is not taking enough medicine a good enough excuse to do what you like on an aircraft? If going naked is OK then lets all do it, it sure would make things a bit more interesting.
Airplanes Flown on..B-727-100, B-727-200, DC-9, F-27, B-707, B-717, B-737, B-747SP, B-747-100, B-747-200, B-747-300, B74
 
ual747den
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 3:50 pm

The woman might have been ill and if so I don't think that she should be charged for what she did, but the crew that day should be fired. Its insane that a woman could say things like that and the crew would be too inconvenienced to have her removed! If I was a passenger I would have thrown a fit and been completely out of control just so that they could not take off! I would stand up and refuse to sit down in my seat until that plane went back to the gate. I wouldn't care if I was arrested that is a valid threat and no way would I have wanted to be on that aircraft.
/// UNITED AIRLINES
 
usnseallt82
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 3:54 pm

I'd have to agree with the previous. If I were onboard that flight, there would have been some sort of detainment if the flight crew wouldn't ask her to leave before departure. And you better damn well believe that I would detain her tail, especially in the world we live in now, amongst so many who were probably fearing for their lives. This isn't something that should occur on the ground half of the time, let alone the air.

I'm sure some paychecks will be cut soon.
Crye me a river
 
PiedmontGirl
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 3:56 pm

This woman is most likely mentally ill and is more in need of a hospital than a prison cell, but she should have been removed from the flight.

The idea that it was "too much trouble" to go back to the terminal and have this woman removed from the flight is absurd.
 
AR385
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 5:04 pm

I have to agree with UAL747DEN.

The problem with these people is that you don't know how is their fit going to evolve. They can calm down, or become violent, hurting other people and becoming a danger to herself. Remember the guy in the Southwest plane that went berserk and was killed by his fellow passengers ?
The crew risked that same situation by not removing that poor woman. Bad judgement call.

But I agree though, She should be in a hospital, not a cell

AR385
 
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 6:27 pm

If the woman turned out to be violent in-flight and needed to be sustained by other pax then i would immeditaley upon landing fire the lead F/A and the captain for refusing to return to the gate. In this situation it tunred out for the better so let this be a warning to all the complacent flight crew out there.
 
Guest

RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 7:00 pm

The only person who should be punished is the Captain, even if the f/a wanted the pax removed if they were off the gate only the Captain can return the aircraft to the gate. Its his decision to do so.
 
Akumas
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 7:34 pm

Go to Google and search for "Airline Reviews" and people reportibly said that DJ crew made jokes over the Aircraft announcement system about crashing into buildings........
 
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VirginFlyer
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 7:37 pm

What is it about nutjobs being on those flights between Tassie and Melbourne? Perhaps it *is* true what they say about Tasmania!

(No offence intended to any Taswegians - hey, I'm from NZ!)

V/F
"So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth." - Bahá'u'lláh
 
Ikarus
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Thu Jan 15, 2004 11:37 pm

Sorry, but the crew did nothing wrong. Their decision might not have been the best possible, but it wasn't wrong either - there is no absolute right and wrong.

So the lady has seen Final Destination one time too many and gone nuts - in flight. Bad luck.

The fact that the lady showed signs of hysteria while still on the ground does not pose a safety risk to the aircraft. Many people with fear of flying get very upset prior to takeoff. Therefore it was unproblematic to continue and takeoff. Perhaps they should have tried to handcuff the woman and carry her to the back of the plane once she went berserk, but other than that there was little they could have done.

The fact is, they had to do an assessment: Cost of turning back (time wasted, fuel wasted, delays for the rest of the day, upset delayed passengers, etc) versus cost of continuing (no risk to aircraft, risk of hysteric outbreak, upset passengers on that single flight). In the end, they figured it was less costly in terms of safety, time, money and negative passenger experiences to fly. They might have been wrong on the latter point, but everything else was sound.

Regards

Ikarus
 
Vimanav
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Fri Jan 16, 2004 12:26 am

No offence intended to any Taswegians - hey, I'm from NZ!

Ah.. so that's what you call a person from Tasmania. You keep learning Smile/happy/getting dizzy

rgds//Vimanav
Sarfaroshi kii tamannaa ab hamaare dil mein hai, Dekhnaa hai zor kitnaa baazu-e-qaatil mein hai
 
kevin
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Fri Jan 16, 2004 12:35 am

I guess the crew of any aircraft is instructed this way "as long as there is no immediate threat to the aircraft and to passengers, flight is to continue". And that is what they did

Even if the woman was removed from the aircraft , the passengers would still be scared since she already said whatever she said.
 
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VirginFlyer
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Fri Jan 16, 2004 8:59 am

Vimanav - I believe the correct term is 'Tasmanian', but a lot of people call them Taswegians. I understand it is derived from Glaswegian (an inhabitant of Glasgow). I couldn't tell you why though...

Do we have anyone from Tassie on this board?

V/F
"So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth." - Bahá'u'lláh
 
Danny
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Fri Jan 16, 2004 9:03 am

Give me a break - why every strange thing happening on the plane should be called mid-air scare? Should they send F-16 to escort an aircraft with stripping psycho? I think that is more medical case that sensation to be discussed at forum.
 
Accidentally
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Fri Jan 16, 2004 9:04 am

kinky

Indianapolis, IN
 
ushermittwoch
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From

Fri Jan 16, 2004 9:05 am

I could handle some topless female pax on my next flight!

 Big thumbs up
Where have all the tri-jets gone...
 
vafi88
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Fri Jan 16, 2004 9:15 am

I'm guessing it was inflight entertainment.  Big thumbs up

Anyway, I couldn't care less if she was or wasn't topless, the thing is, she is a psycho and really stupid. I wouldn't take action against the airline. UAL744DEN you're just getting sue happy on your hobby...

Vitaly
I'd like to elect a president that has a Higher IQ than a retarted ant.
 
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VirginFlyer
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Fri Jan 16, 2004 9:30 am

Danny - that would be the Herald Sun's fault. One of Rupert Murdoch's 'quality' newspapers in this country...  Yeah sure

Ushermittwoch - Perhaps you are best off looking at this topic: http://www.airliners.net/discussions/general_aviation/read.main/1351595/

V/F
"So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth." - Bahá'u'lláh
 
wgw2707
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Fri Jan 16, 2004 3:26 pm

In the USA they would not have taken off with a woman like that onboard. I think Virgin should have acted in a similiar manner, who cares if it causes a delay, all threats should be taken seriously. The fact that they did not return to the gate meant that everyone else on that flight had to endure a screaming, half naked lady shouting that they were going to crash. It must have been terrible. I think QANTAS is looking like an increasingly good choice in light of this incident for my next trip to Australia...  Nuts

-WGW2707
 
j_hallgren
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Fri Jan 16, 2004 3:35 pm

So was that flight now called "Hooter's Air"?
COBOL - Not a dead language yet!
 
Ryanair!!!
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Fri Jan 16, 2004 7:42 pm

The fact that they did not return to the gate meant that everyone else on that flight had to endure a screaming, half naked lady shouting that they were going to crash.

Puh-lease... just because the crew made a judgement call not to turn back does not make the airline unsafe! Remember way back when a British Airways 747-200 was taxiing in Kuala Lumpur (Subang) en route to Perth back in June 1982? Someone in the plane actually got up and insisted that she be let off the plane because that flight was "doomed". Did they taxi back? No... but of course the plane bore the brunt of Mount Galungung later that evening flying into a cloud of volcanic ash.

So it is the call of the pilot to continue the flight.

Another incident of a decision made by an Air India pilopt recently to divert some some obscure airport in India instead of Mumbai? He got fired... So you see, you can imagine the immense amount of pressure the pilot is under to make all these decisions which directly affects the company he works for. So let's not chide him for it.
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usnseallt82
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Fri Jan 16, 2004 11:49 pm

Very well indeed. Though I would like to ask that you be that pilot one day and take the time to walk into the cabin area to see the faces of your pax. I think any self-respecting captain would make the call to abort.

Of course, in my biz, there's always the ejection process.  Big thumbs up

Cheers!
Crye me a river
 
mjszanto
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RE: Mid-air Scare As Woman Strips On `flight From Hell

Sat Jan 17, 2004 9:12 am

Anyone have any pictures?  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

Usnseallt82, I think you would risk having a premature ejection in this case.

I would certainly not sue the airline if this woman was in good shape. Why fly on hooters, when you can fly on Virgin Blue. Come to think of it, I thought that's why people fly Virgin. At Virgin Music, they even are adding a curtained off adult section with a stripper's pole. God, the nutty things people sue about these days.

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