Two airline passengers apparently unable to agree on the rules of engagement over elbow room allegedly got into a physical altercation right before takeoff that caused a San Francisco-to-Las Vegas flight to return to the gate where cops were waiting.
Surprisingly enough, no cell phone video of this particular encounter on United Airlines has emerged as yet.
But Google exec Jack Krawcyzk tweeted out a picture of what appears to be a police officer and a flight attendant standing in the aisle, along with a caption that reads “On my first flight in 15 months, of course we were rerouted back to the gate because two passengers got into a physical altercation over elbow placement upon arm rests.”
Cops reportedly escorted the adversaries off the plane. Neither of them suffered any injuries in the affray, and both declined to “pursue further police action,” SFGate reported.
Authorities told them to book other flights, however, as they were not permitted to re-plane.
On my first flight in 15 months, of course we were rerouted back to the gate because two passengers got into a physical altercation over elbow placement upon arm rests. pic.twitter.com/YBAV1iG2Fk
— Jack Krawczyk (@JackK) June 13, 2021
Although anti-social, combative behavior aboard aircraft seems to be on the rise, as it were, usually — but not always — involving mask policies rather than wrestling over arm rests. A number of brawls or outbursts for other reasons have also broken in terminal areas.
With long lines at TSA screening queues, plus being packed in on planes like sardines, along with random flight delays, traveling by commercial air routinely pre-COVID was stressful or frustrating enough.
Since the easing of pandemic restrictions and the subsequent increase in pent-up passenger traffic, perhaps on some level, the metaphorical Kraken has been released.
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) June 13, 2021
In a press release issued in late May, the Federal Aviation Administration said that it is implementing a “zero-tolerance policy for unruly and dangerous behavior by passengers.” Violators could face civil penalties as well as criminal charges.
In any event, Krawcyzk’s tweet generated a significant reaction on Twitter, including those with etiquette tips. Here is a sampling (warning for language):
Look, the rules are simple:
Aisle gets the leg room.
Window seat gets the window.
Middle seat gets two armrests.
So it has always been, so it shall always be.
Figure it out, people.
— 🔥 Lucky Dog Hot Sauce 🔥 (@LuckyDogHotSaus) June 14, 2021
I wonder why? 🤔 pic.twitter.com/X7deiqIEi5
— DBryte (@DBryte) June 14, 2021
Aisle gets the outside arm rest and some leg and body room. Middle gets two arm rests and window gets the armrest and window/wall to lean on.
— Bucky (@buckshow8) June 14, 2021
While we’re here: please stop reclining. Don’t take your shoes off. Jackets and small bags under your seat, not the overhead. No need to stand once we taxi to the gate. You shouldn’t be getting off until the row in front of you is gone.
— Danny (@BetTheOver85) June 14, 2021
Flying is miserable. You have to get to the airport early. They put you on the plane way before it’s time to take off. The air is dry and thin. The engine noise is constant.
I don’t know how someone gets on a plane and thinks, “I should make this even worse for everyone.”
— Tom Haflinger (@TomHaflinger) June 14, 2021
No personal responsibility for your own actions. It is so easy to shed accountability to someone or some other entity!!
Americans are entitled, demanding, trashy, and litigious.
You don’t see this type of obnoxious and abhorrent behavior in foreign countries. Wake up! Be an adult
— Stacymills (@StacyDMills) June 14, 2021
Better yet, two small arm rests.
— learningtobehere (@learningtobehe1) June 15, 2021
I just recently flew for the first time since the pandemic, as well, which is why I’m looking at @Amtrak for my next travel adventure 😁🚝🛤
— Melissa St. Hilaire 🌊 (@dreamoutloud) June 14, 2021
I’m a relatively small person so I happily give up the armrest to my neighbor.
But I admit that when the person next to me is spilling over into my space, making contact with me, I find that off-putting.
But even then I keep my mouth shut and just get to the destination.
— Rufus Raul (@raul_rufus) June 14, 2021
No matter where I sit, I never get ANY arm rest because I end up next to the biggest person on earth who overflows into my seat space. Not blaming someone for being big, blaming the fuckin airlines for shoveling us into such cramp seats.
— Lina Kay (@LinaKay3) June 15, 2021
Krawcyzk also sent out this follow-up tweet:
This is getting more attention than I would have thought. While I do have a soundcloud, please consider donating to help de-stigmatizing mental health and encouraging support – it is a pandemic that will last longer than COVID: https://t.co/g4CLZ1RAXe
— Jack Krawczyk (@JackK) June 14, 2021
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