Unruly Delta Off-Duty Flight Attendant Forces Delta Atlanta-Bound Flight to Divert

By Kurt Stolz on 13 June 2021
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View from a Delta flight that had departed from Los Angeles

A second Delta Air Lines flight in as many days was forced to divert after an unruly off-duty flight attendant commandeered the aircraft’s public-address system and announced that everyone should take their seats and prepare to put on oxygen masks.

The action led to a major scuffle.

Crew members and passengers heeded the call of the captain over the PA asking for “all able-bodied men” to come to the front of the plane for an emergency, subduing the errant flight attendant.

Video posted on social media from the flight showed a violent confrontation where several passengers were visible wrestling the flight attendant to the ground as someone shouted, “Get him down.  Keep him down.”

One passenger, Benjamin Curlee, said on TikTok that the PA announcement made everyone “extremely tense.”

Passengers on the flight told reporters that the man was oddly dressed and was wearing a helmet as well as elbow and knee pads.

Delta Flight 1730 was en route from Los Angeles to Atlanta when the incident on board the Airbus A321 took place.  It had departed from LAX at 5:52 p.m. and landed at Will Rogers World Airport at 10:30 p.m. local time. It finally departed for Atlanta at 1:57 a.m. and arrived there at 5:09 a.m.

Delta confirmed the details of the incident.

“Thanks to the crew and passengers of Delta Flight 1730 who assisted in detaining an unruly passenger as the flight diverted to Oklahoma City,” the spokesman said in a statement. “The aircraft landed without incident and the passenger was removed by law enforcement.”

“We apologize to our customers for the delay and any additional inconvenience this caused,” the spokesman added.

The off-duty flight attendant was removed from the plane by Oklahoma City police and brought to hospital, where he was released into the custody of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The incident comes one day after Delta Flight 113 from Los Angeles to New York was diverted to Detroit Metropolitan Airport, also because of a disruptive passenger.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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