Several passengers were removed from American Airlines flight 1174 from Philadelphia to Miami on Saturday after a man threw up in the coach lavatory prior to departure.
Reader Robert G. was on board on a paid first class ticket sitting in 2B. He had noticed the sick man with what he described as “a weird walk” when they were still at the gate. As the man was coming forward from the back of the plane he stopped at row two and vomited all over this first class passenger.
Fortunately Robert had a change of clothes in his carry on bag, but notes “this is absolute proof it isn’t serving alcohol on planes that’s the problem, he was wasted long before he got on this plane.”
So at the gate, I saw the guy, looked 25-30 years old. …Gate agent should’ve flagged that one. I thought to myself, maybe I should say something, but who really wants to do that these days. Offend the passenger, offend the crew, and since he wasn’t..in first class I really didn’t care.
[After boarding completed] I start to see a procession of maybe five people, very normal looking, walk to front of plane with their bags. …Then the young guy comes walking up, he’s looking worse off than before, and just looks up and vomits right at me. They keep pushing/guiding him off with American ground staff. ..Other passengers were helpful as could be, handing me their pouches of cleaning wipes.
The man was being guided by American staff, apparently, as the vomited on the passenger. And certainly this wasn’t part of the bundle of experiences purchased with a first class ticket. In my view American should offer a ‘do over’ in first class as compensation, at least, but I’d be surprised if they do.
All of this happened without alcohol being served in coach on the plane. The plane hadn’t even taken off yet. So the ban on coach booze didn’t stop it. And truth be told the rest of the passengers need access to a drink to handle everything that’s going on around them. This went on before the flight even took off (it was only delayed 10 minutes), and most of the passengers on board couldn’t even have a drink and settle into their seats, marveling at what just occurred.