News – Come fly the hostile skies.
A combative United Airlines passenger was recently ejected from his flight to California after appearing to threaten a flight attendant and a few of the other passengers, according to a series of viral TikTok videos taken by a traveler.
TikTok user Alexander Clark, who uploaded the videos last week, claimed the incident began after the passenger refused to wear his mask or hang up his mobile phone. He then began yelling at the flight attendant who made the requests, the video shows.
“The f— you talking to me like that for, bro?” the man can be seen asking the flight attendant, presumably after the attendant made the requests. “Take me off! I don’t give a f—! I don’t even want to go to Cali!”
The unruly passenger then rips off his mask before promising to find out the flight attendant’s “name, date of birth and address.”
“I will know your social security number before I get off this plane! On my daughter!”
The passenger, who was seated in the row behind Clark in a middle seat, then appears to shove another man out of the aisle seat and into the aisle. Immediately after, he walks toward the galley to confront a flight attendant.
“What’s the law gonna do?” he says to the flight attendant. Another man — who appears to be wearing a badge on his hip — tries to intervene, but he, too, is threatened.
“Mind your business. Mind your business. Because I will break your neck,” the unruly passenger says.
He continues yelling, insisting he needs to “explain something” to the flight attendant, until yet another passenger walks over and implores the man to end the confrontation so the flight can depart. He appears to calm down and walk back to his seat. The video ends when another passenger — the one who convinced the unruly traveler to get back to his seat — then appears to grab the phone from Clark’s hand, presumably to stop him from filming.
Clark, however, uploaded two follow-up videos, both of which appeared to contain footage taken by a passenger several rows behind him. In those clips, the unruly passenger and two other men can be seen yelling at Clark, allegedly because he was taking video of the altercation.
“Why you recording s—, bro?” one of the men is heard asking.
“Let’s go to jail! Because I’m the only n—- on this plane that’s fit to go to jail!” the unruly passenger yells into the cabin.
Clark, the CEO of a virtual-reality gaming studio, explained in the captions that the man had tried deleting the video from his phone. Clark says he quickly “undeleted it” after snatching his device back.
He added that police later boarded the plane to escort multiple people from the flight, including the combative passenger.
A representative for the airport authority could not immediately confirm whether any of the offending passengers were arrested.
Flight crews working amid the pandemic, meanwhile, have previously reported an uptick in similar incidents since January. As of September, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said reports of unruly passengers were coming in at twice the rate they were reported at the end of 2020.
Since January 2021, the FAA has confirmed at least reports of at least 4,724 such incidents of bad behavior, the majority of which involve passengers refusing to comply with mask mandates.
The FAA has also proposed over $1,100,000 in civil penalties (collectively) against some of those disruptive passengers since enacting a zero-tolerance policy aimed at curbing bad behavior on commercial flights. Passengers can also face jail time for more egregious behavior.
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