FORT LAUDERDALE-HOLLYWOOD INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, FLA. (WSVN) - A Spirit Airlines flight has taken off almost a full day later than originally scheduled after a passenger refused to toss her alcoholic beverage when boarding the plane.
The flight was scheduled to leave Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, Wednesday, headed to Cartagena, Colombia, at about 11 a.m., but there was a maintenance issue that caused a slight delay.
Passengers had to get off the plane and reboard. However, one of the passengers tried to reboard the plane while drinking an alcoholic beverage, setting off a chain of events that would end up canceling the flight for the day.
“We all sit back down, and this woman is getting on the plane, and she has a mixed drink,” said passenger Ryan Brooke, “and the attendants are telling her, ‘You can either finish it outside the plane or you can throw it away.'”
When flight attendants told her she couldn’t bring alcohol on the plane, passengers said she pushed her way into a bathroom and locked herself in there for about 20 to 25 minutes.
“Oh, so they want to attack me,” said the woman on a video sent in by 7News viewer Diego Souza. “Wait until the police come.”
“She like threw her drink at one of the people working on the plane,” said a passenger.
The woman did eventually leave the plane, but it took long enough to get her off that the pilots had expired their maximum fly time, so they weren’t legally allowed to fly the plane.
“Everybody asked her, ‘Please, get off,’ because we had 10 minutes to push off,” said another passenger. “They were ready to push off, literally ready to push off. She’s the one that stopped the whole thing. When I heard the word ‘sheriff,’ I said, ‘We are not gonna make the 10 minute window,’ but the stewardesses all said if she gets off voluntarily we can push off, and she heard that, and she says, ‘Well, I am not getting off. If I don’t go, nobody does.'”
After the airline failed to secure another flight crew, the flight had to be canceled. Passengers said they were rebooked for a flight for 10:07 a.m. Thursday.
“Everybody’s talking to everybody else, ‘How could that lady do that?’ I mean, it was such a stupid thing to do,” said passenger Mary Brooke.
Passengers said the woman left the plane before the Broward Sheriff’s Office arrived and was not arrested.
“Do I think she should’ve been arrested? Probably, but what are you gonna do?” said Brooke.
According to the airline, the woman’s ticket was refunded, and she was not on the Thursday morning flight.
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