Delta Pilot Yanks And Kicks Lavatory Door, Trying To Rescue Passenger Trapped Inside For 35 Minutes

A Delta Air Lines passenger got stuck in the lavatory for 35 minutes on a flight from Salt Lake City to New Orleans recently, as flight attendants and a pilot struggle mightily to free him.

Lavatory man’s wife and two toddlers were waiting for him to return to his seat. She began to wonder what happened after five minutes. After ten minutes, their four year old became impatient for daddy. She overheard a flight attendant talking about a passenger being “stuck.”

At that point it was just cabin crew “yanking the bathroom door handle” and then they were joined by a passenger who tried to get the door open. After 20 minutes, a pilot came out and he was willing to go further, risking damage to the door.

My Husband got Stuck in a Delta airplane bathroom for 35 minutes.
byu/StuckDeltaBathroom indelta

The husband was kicking from the inside, the pilot pulling from the outside, when they finally managed to get it open. (It would be pretty funny if the passenger and pilot were both pulling on the door in opposite directions and that’s why it took so long..) Here they are finally getting the door open.

Now, some commenters on social media think the husband was just looking for a break from the kids, hiding out in the lav. A flight attendant once shared she’d found a passenger taking such a long time in the lavatory that everyone was concerned about a medical emergency. After much knocking he came out, iPad in hand. He went in there to watch a movie. At least he hadn’t watched that kind of movie at his seat. That doesn’t seem to be the case here, though.

The family does feel that they’re entitled to a refund of the man’s $300 ticket after having such a bad experience. Delta reportedly asked the woman not to post video to social media, but when they’d only offer 2,000 SkyMiles for the ordeal she didn’t feel any obligation to oblige that request.

This is more common than you’d think. United once had to divert to Denver to rescue a passenger stuck in the lavatory, and American had to cancel a flight because a passenger went to the bathroom before the flight and got stuck inside. Meanwhile, an American flight attendant locked a woman and her toddler in a lavatory during a flight, claiming they were terrorists (they weren’t). The best advice, I guess, is to go to the bathroom prior to boarding.

(HT: Paddle Your Own Kanoo)

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. I thought Delta was the world’s only PERFECT airline.. At least that’s what one person who regularly posts here alleges.

  2. Am I read this correctly? They want a refund for $300 on their ticket. C’mon people.
    I’m tired of reading articles on everyday life and someone wants $$$ for being ‘inconvenienced”.

  3. Am I read this correctly? They want a refund for $300 on their ticket. C’mon people.
    I’m tired of reading articles on everyday life and someone wants $$$ for being ‘inconvenienced”.

  4. You, Ghost, are the only one that is deranged enough to think that there is a PERFECT anything. I have certainly not posted that description of any airline.

    This story is, of course, in distinct contrast to the United pilot’s barricade of the lav on their aircraft.

    Since this was a domestic flight less than 8 hours long, there were only 2 pilots on it so the pilot came off the flight deck to try to take care of a passenger.

  5. This pilot is now my favorite. Doing something hands on to fix a problem rather than just diverting the flight or delivering nonsense soliloquies over the PA.

  6. The saddest part of this story is that whomever was stuck in the airplane bathroom will have being stuck in an airplane bathroom as the most interesting thing that ever happened to them. Most people are so boring.

  7. The funny part is the 2,000 Sky Pesos not to post the video. You can get that for luggage a little late. What’s that worth now? $1.50?

  8. Morons who don’t know their airplane could have opened the lav door in a flash….but they didn’t know how to release it. Hero to zero when the maintenance guy gets there and pulls the pins. Hilarious.

  9. He should have paid Delta an extra $300 for the privilege of being stuck in the greatest lavatory in the history of mankind…a Delta lavatory. Anyone who thinks otherwise is just clearly wrong, and my daddy will generate “facts” to prove why!

  10. your no junior of me.

    You have no intelligence or my DNA

    and you still confirm that I live rent free in your head. which is not exactly something you should be proud of.

  11. Of course he should get his money back. He was sood a seat in the passenger cabin, not in the toilet. I’ a bit paranoid about tge same thing happening to me in those upright-coffin-sized lavs in use today.

  12. Daddy,
    I do have your DNA…right down to your lack of proofreading before you hit “post.”

    Dinner at my place this weekend?

  13. Fortunately, this Delta Air Lines pilot did not need to use his gun to shoot off the lavatory lock like you would see in a first-run Hollywood airline disaster action movie.

  14. A couple of years ago I was on an Air China flight ATH-MUC (who knew?) on an A330. Seated at the rear bulkhead I had a view of the mid-cabin lavs. So many pax could not figure out how to open the accordion doors common on the A330.

    One lady tried so hard she removed the door from its hinges and it fell into the aisle.

    Wish I captured this on video!

  15. Thought there is a release for the door from the outside under one of the signs for cases like this.

  16. They should have just left him the lav until they landed. Then a mechanic could have let him out.

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