American Airlines Passengers Hide Beneath Blankets To Protect Themselves From Leaking Water

American Airlines passengers took refuge underneath a blanket recently as water leaked down on them from above inside the cabin, getting them and their bags wet throughout the flight. Eventually the blanket would have become wet, too, but worked to keep moisture away for awhile.

Water in the cabin is frequently misunderstood by passengers – almost as often as speed tape.

  • Fog inside an airplane cabin is common in hot, humid places because of the rapid cooling and condensation of the warm air coming into contact with the plane’s air conditioning system. As the air conditioning units cool the cabin, they also lower the dew point, causing water vapor in the air to condense into droplets. The aircraft’s water separators do minimize fogging, but can be overwhelmed when it’s extremely hot and humid. This is not a safety issue.

  • Planes can also drip water in the cabin due to condensation from the air conditioning system. The air conditioning system produces condensate water, which is usually drained through the underfloor ducting and out of the drain mast. Dripping into the cabin isn’t a flight safety issue, either, however over time there could be potential damage to electrical components and upholstery, as well as mold or mildew growth.

However what I want to know is how it happened that a blanket wound up in the economy cabin! Several months ago American Airlines flight attendants were reminded not to provide better service to passengers in coach, and expressly not to offer premium cabin blankets to customers in back.

As long as they’re handing out blankets in coach on American, one would have been helpful here on the floor:

Remember, always wear shoes on the aircraft, including at your seat – but especially when you go to the lavatory. That moisture on the floor isn’t condensation from the air conditioning.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. The only thing that would cause a leak from above is condensation. Cant stop that .
    I much rather have condensation leaking then maggots crawling out of
    the overhead bin (on Delta Aitlines) falling on customers.

  2. The poster can’t be serious. His kids don’t even talk to him, that’s how un serious he is with life. The blanket isn’t even damp in the picture. I highly doubt the condensation continued the whole flight, as the air is dry once inflight.

    Also the blanket isn’t a first class blanket. People try anything to get money.

  3. Thank you, Gary, for your comprehensive report on pesky aircraft water condensation. I am pleased to share some of my frequent flyer pro tips with View From the Wing readers. When flying in the coach cabin on American Airlines and water drips on your head or floods the cabin due to condensation from the air conditioning system, request a few complimentary plastic garbage bags and FAA-approved speed tape from your friendly neighborhood flight attendant. I recommend using the garbage bags as tarps to dike, dam, divert, and direct dripping water away from you and the other passengers.

    However, if flying on Delta Air Lines, remember that large plastic garbage bags are also helpful in preventing the infestation of live and wiggling free-range maggots feeding on rotting fish stored in the overhead passenger baggage bins from dripping on your head and the other seated passengers.

  4. You just can’t make some people happy. First Americans passengers complain about no pre-departure beverage, and now they’re complaining when they drip one from the ceiling. It’s American Airlines, if you want a better experience fly one of the other ULCC‘s next time.

  5. SO and I buy a hundred dollar ticket every day to “fly” our house, and it doesn’t even move through the air at 500 MPH or slam down on it’s foundation several times a day or have several hundred ungrateful humans passing through it, yet light bulbs burn out, there are occasional smells, water leaks, cracks, grumpy service, spills, trash. Who is running this place? Oh, right…

    Now multiply by several hundred “houses”, complete with thousands of passengers armed with cameras to record your every mistake. When your house is perfect every day, get back to me. Merde happens. Learn to roll with it.

  6. I could see the HUGE concern about stuff dripping – it was just a few days ago where the dripping was maggots – shivers. I pack an umbrella (very seldom used) in my carryon. Wonder what the customers around me or the crew would say if I opened it up mid-flight. Maybe inside the terminal they could sell over-priced “DisneyLike” ponchos.

    That floor pic was projectile vomit! I’ve had to clean similar. I wore hazmat clothing and mask, yet it sits there as if they (AA) are proud of the stain. I’d be walking off the airplane if that was my seat.

  7. I recall pre covid days when American would place a clean blanket in First Class. Now you need to beg. And the vomit seen in photo. Is beyond pathetic.

  8. The falling maggots was not a fault of Delta Air Lines. It was the fault of security allowing the parcel through! Kinda like the guy that “shat” down the aisle several months ago. Not the airline’s fault. But, even though the airline does the correct remediation, people point the finger at the wrong entity anyway.

  9. It’s usually from a passenger who has a bottle of something in the overhead bin not tightly sealed.

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