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FutureStarrDisruptive Passenger Causes #AmericanAirlines Flight 3444 to Be Diverted to Raleigh-Durham #Airport
On Wednesday morning, American Airlines Flight 3444 was abruptly diverted to Raleigh-Durham Airport due to an unruly passenger. After departing Jacksonville International Airport in Florida and heading for Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, the plane encountered trouble shortly after takeoff.
At RDU Airport, law enforcement personnel stepped aboard and immediately began questioning the suspect. Radio transmissions indicated that crew members and other passengers assisted in restrainting him.
On Wednesday morning, American Airlines Flight 3444 from Jacksonville to Washington D.C. was diverted to Raleigh-Durham Airport due to a disruptive passenger. According to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the Embraer E170 had originally been scheduled for Washington but was grounded after RDU officials made a ground stop.
According to reports from CNN and the FAA, a female passenger attempted to breach the cockpit. Tiffany Michelle Miles, 36, was arrested and charged with misdemeanor airport obstruction by RDU police.
First Coast News reported that an unruly passenger from Jacksonville initially complained about the size of her overhead bin before making a fuss about not receiving free drinks as promised in first class. Eventually, all passengers in first class had to deplane at the airport and be rebooked on another flight.
After the woman reportedly made numerous threats against passengers and staff, a flight crew member felt it necessary to call in reinforcements for restraint. Radio transmissions showed that the crew members successfully kept her under control, enabling her to exit without incident.
The FBI reported that their Charlotte field office has responded to the incident and is conducting interviews in order to gather facts. They are also working closely with the U.S. Attorney's Office in North Carolina in order to decide if federal charges will be filed.
American Airlines is in the meantime rebooking passengers on other flights and tweeting that the incident "is being investigated by the FAA."
Envoy Air, which operates the Embraer E170 for American Airlines, has announced on its website that they will not be operating Flight 3444 from Jacksonville to Washington on Wednesday.
The airline issued a statement, noting it is taking steps to safeguard employees and customers from unruly passengers. It assured passengers that it would handle this incident promptly and is working to alter its policies regarding disruptive passengers.
The FAA and FBI are both investigating this incident, which marks the first time an airline has had to divert a plane due to an unruly passenger trying to break into the cockpit. It also underscores how serious of an issue unruly passengers have become within this year's aviation industry; leading them to report more cases than usual this year.
Disruptive passengers are an increasing issue on commercial airliners. Not only do they disrupt the flight, but they pose a danger and security threat; plus, their actions may interfere with crew member performance.
The Federal Aviation Administration has previously issued warnings and counseling to unruly passengers, but now the agency has implemented a zero tolerance policy. If someone is found breaking the rules, they could face fines of up to $37,000 per violation.
According to CNBC, the FAA has investigated 1,091 reports of unruly passengers this year. About 15% of those cases led to enforcement action - which includes proposed fines.
Few have been arrested, yet few have faced criminal charges. That is because the FAA lacks prosecutorial authority over federal crimes committed aboard commercial flights - thus many cases end up with the FBI instead.
Some of the most serious incidents involve violent passengers who punch, duct tape or slap crew members and passengers on board. These attacks can result in injury or traumatic experiences for both those responsible and everyone else on board - including pilots.
Cabin Crew should strive to resolve these situations amicably whenever possible. If they cannot, then they must restrain the offender and use various security measures like lockdown of the cabin, diverting the aircraft, or engaging law enforcement on the ground.
Another frequent cause of passenger unruliness is intoxication. Passengers who are too drunk to cope with the stresses of flying may become agitated and aggressive.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many airlines required passengers to wear masks. Nonetheless, some European and Asian airlines have chosen not to abide by this mandate.
Some passengers were indignant at the mask requirement. For those who refused to wear them, it was seen as a political statement and an indication of their autonomy.
The rise of unruly passenger incidents has caused alarm among airline industry, governments and travellers. These incidents can result in disruption of flights, harassment and breaches to safety regulations and public health directives.
On Wednesday morning, American Airlines flight 24 was diverted to Raleigh-Durham Airport due to a disturbance on board that prompted the crew to raise the threat level on board to level 4. A 'level 4 threat' is defined as any attempt or actual breach of the cockpit door; this is usually considered the most severe security situation and requires immediate diversion to another airport.
The plane had been scheduled to leave Jacksonville, Florida at 2:30 p.m. but was diverted to RDU after the woman on board allegedly became disruptive and intoxicated. The FBI has launched an investigation into this incident.
According to the FAA, police removed a disruptive passenger from the aircraft upon arrival at Raleigh-Durham Airport. The FBI Charlotte Field Office says they will consult with the United States Attorney's office in North Carolina regarding whether federal charges will be filed.
Uncertain why the unruly passenger activated the alarm, but it was evident that the flight's crew was under duress. When the plane finally touched down in Raleigh at 3:41 p.m., local authorities arrested the passenger for his actions.
Despite the disruption, the plane's arrival was uneventful and everyone on board disembarked safely. TSA reports that they are investigating what occurred aboard, with evidence pointing to a passenger who "knowingly interfered with the performance of the pilots and flight attendants by assaulting and intimidating them and threatening those around him with injury or death."
When considering a risk to public safety, several elements must be taken into account: available intelligence, the timing of an attack and whether terrorists could carry it out.
Furthermore, the government determines the level of protective security measures necessary based on specific threats and risks. They set terrorism threat levels in order to inform citizens about potential hazards they may face.
These threat levels are created by the Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre (JTAC) and MI5, known as MI5. They are updated frequently to reflect shifts in the threat landscape.
These levels provide citizens with the necessary information to make an informed decision about whether or not to travel a certain country. They also enable agencies and organizations to assess how best to protect their people.
An FBI spokesperson confirmed that they responded to the incident and removed the disruptive passenger from the plane. To gather facts, agents from their Charlotte field office are conducting interviews and consulting with US Attorney's Offices in North Carolina and Tennessee to decide if federal charges will be filed, according to an FBI spokesperson.
Envoy Air reported on Wednesday afternoon that Flight 3444 from Jacksonville International Airport in Florida had been diverted to Raleigh-Durham Airport due to a passenger disturbance. According to the FAA, the aircraft landed safely at RDU, where authorities boarded it and detained the suspect.
An Air Traffic Control recording shows the pilot warning about a level four threat to the aircraft - which is issued for any "attempted or actual breach of the flight deck." The airline has stated it is investigating this incident.
Passenger Savannah Figueroa reported to WRAL-TV that the man started shouting and swearing during the flight, then attempted to break a window. According to Figueroa, crew members helped restrain him before law enforcement removed him from the aircraft.
Figueroa reported hearing the man yell out "I want to kill you!" for about an hour before they diverted the flight due to what appeared to be a panic attack, according to an FBI complaint.
An FBI spokesperson informed Newsweek that the agency has a history of dealing with disruptive passengers, and is exploring whether it can do more to prevent them from disrupting flights. Furthermore, it owns several high-end jets as well as other aviation assets with surveillance and intelligence capabilities.
The FBI has earned a reputation for aviation safety, boasting an intensive aircraft maintenance program and rigorous pilot training. Its modern jets and other assets can be utilized for domestic or international transfer-of-custody flights, overseas transfers of hazardous or explosive material to crime laboratories, as well as other high-profile operations.
On February 9, a Frontier Airlines flight headed from New York to Orlando was diverted to Raleigh-Durham International Airport after a passenger acted disruptively aboard, according to an FBI criminal complaint. Michael Aaron Ganter is accused of intentionally interfering with flight attendants and crew members by assaulting them, intimidating them, and threatening those around him with injury or death if they did not restrain him.