Monthly Archives: December 2006

10 Craziest Airline Stories of the Year

It’s the time of year when all news outlets do Top 10 lists of this or that, so, because I have no original ideas whatsoever, I’m bringing you the 10 Craziest Airline Stories of 2006.  Enjoy.

10) A Lithuanian tourist in Cancun runs out of money and heads to the airport to strip for cash so she can buy a ticket home.

9) Baggage screeners at Fort Lauderdale find human head in luggage.  Owner claims it’s used for voodoo.

8) Another year of celebrities getting kicked off planes.  While Snoop Dogg, DMX and Mo’Nique all had run-ins, I believe David Hasselhoff’s drinking binge prior to boarding a British Airways flight takes the prize.  Said a witness, "he had trouble standing."

7) Northwest Airlines killed 9,000 1-day-old turkeys it was transporting from Detroit to San Francisco.  This isn’t funny, but killing 9,000 turkeys on one flight is impressive, isn’t it?

6) China Southern tells passengers to pee before they fly to save money.

5) Northwest Airlines publishes pamphlet telling laid off workers they "shouldn’t be shy about pulling something they like out of the trash" to save money.

4) Angry passenger bites ear off of Alitalia employee after being told his flight was overbooked.

3) Turkish mechanic is fired after sacrificing camel at Istanbul’s airport as part of a celebration for completing some work.

2) A woman’s flatulence causes a flight to make unscheduled landing.

1) Passenger carrying penis pump in bag at O’Hare is too embarassed to tell security that it’s a penis pump.  So he tells them it’s a bomb.

Have a merry Christmas.

Air France Sued by “Fat” Passenger

A passenger who weighed 353 pounds is suing Air France for forcing him to buy a 2nd seat on a flight from Delhi to Paris last year.  He was especially upset that Air France staff measured his waist in the airport to prove that he was too large.  He also wasn’t too happy that Air France’s lawyer said, "Let’s be objective. This man is fat…He barely fits
on the courtroom chair. How could he sit in an airplane?"  That wasn’t nice.  Oh, and the lawyer repeatedly referred to him as being "enormous" during the trial.  The passenger is seeking about $11,000 in damages, payable in pudding.

Baby Put Through Airport X-Ray Machine

Oy.

A woman put her 1-month old grandson through the X-Ray machine at LAX on Saturday, not realizing that she shouldn’t do that (don’t ask).  The baby was taken to the hospital and was completely fine.  Security officials, however, were successful in keeping 4 ounces of toothpaste off the aircraft, but not in keeping a baby out of an x-ray machine.  Keep up the good work.

Man Found Sleeping on Empty Delta Aircraft

In the continuing farce of airport security…

A man was found sleeping on a Delta 737 in Raleigh airport yesterday morning before the flight was boarded.  I’m glad security was focused on keeping bottled water off the aircraft, while keeping no eye on a guy sleeping on an airplane.  Well done!

Delta Rejects US Airways Bid

You can read much more about this elsewhere, but in case you didn’t see it (if you’re reading this site, though, you probably have seen it.  I’ll shut up now) Delta rejected US Airways’ buyout offer.  The most interesting reason given by Delta is that the merger would create monopoly power on 2,000 city pairs.  I would think this would be a good thing for an airline, as they could increase fares, but they’re saying that the merger would never pass Department of Justice scrutiny.  Look for US Airways to increase their offer, only to be rebuffed again.  My guess?  Delta will ultimately stay independent.

Broomstick One

Not exactly an airline story, but when Hillary Clinton visited Iraq in November, the military assigned her helicopter the name Broomstick One. 

2-for-1 Fares to South Africa

South African Airways has a 2-for-1 sale for flights between New York or Washington, DC, and Johannesburg and both people fly for a total of $1350 round trip.   $675 per person (yes, I can do math).  Fly between January 15 and February 15.

New York & Boston to Cairo or Tel Aviv, $459 Round Trip

Alitalia has a great deal on a flight from New York or Boston to Cairo or Tel Aviv:  book by December 27, and you can fly to those cities for just $459 between January 15 and February 28.  Flights often cost double that.

Mouse on a Plane

(As always, thanks to Nicole at Hitwise for another winner…)

80 live mice escaped from a man’s carry-on luggage on a Saudi Arabian Airlines flight from Riyadh to Tabuk.   No word on why the man had mice in his bag, how he got them on board, how they escaped, or how they rounded up the mice.  I suppose this really leaves more questions open than it answers, doesn’t it?

Christmas Tree Follow Up

A follow-up to the removal of the Christmas trees at Seattle’s airport:

The folks running Seattle’s airport decided the hell with it, we’re putting the Christmas trees back.  The group that started the brouhaha by asking for a menorah to placed in the airport denies that it ever asked for the trees to be taken down, so the trees were put back up.  They’re still annoyed that a menorah wasn’t put up, though.

But the same group had a better experience with Hawaii’s airport, which announced that they will, in fact, be displaying menorahs in December.  All is right with the world.