By Frank Tibbo
A few years ago the captain of a Boeing 737 that had just departed advised Air Traffic Control that he had to return to the airport.
There’s nothing unusual or startling about that. It could happen for several reasons.
About the same time as this happened I was aboard an aircraft that had departed Gander International.
The aircraft departed Runway 21 and we were only as far as Gander Lake when the aircraft lost one its two engines and had to return to the airport. Everything went as smooth as could be with the crash crew standing by.
The B737 in this story didn’t need the crash crew standing by. There was no mechanical problem with the aircraft or any of the 52 passengers, nor was Air Traffic Control told why the flight was being aborted.
The aircraft was cleared to return to the airport and landed 25 minutes after departure without incident.
Well it turns out that two of the flight attendants, one male and the other female, didn’t like each other very much. It’s OK I suppose to not like each other but there should be a limit to how far it goes. The two were sitting side by side for the climb when one crossed their legs and while doing so kicked the other flight attendant.
The flight attendant that was struck elbowed the other flight attendant and the two came to blows.
The captain was advised that the two were having an altercation and decided to return.
The two flight attendants were removed from the aircraft, replacement flight attendants took their positions, and the aircraft reached its destination with a delay of three hours and 40 minutes.
The aircraft’s safety was not compromised in any way, but the two had a lot of explaining to do. There is also the matter of the cost of the landing fee, fuel and flight interruption and who was going to be responsible. The airline wouldn’t release those details.
Original article can be found here: http://www.ganderbeacon.ca