Man arrested after claiming to have coronavirus on a flight, leading to 8-hour delay

Sirena Bergman@SirenaBergman
Monday 16 March 2020 14:30
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(iStock)

Here's a tip: when the whole world is freaking out about a global pandemic, maybe don't joke about having the virus in an enclosed space with a bunch of strangers?

Apparently one man didn't get the memo and decided to (falsely) declare he has coronavirus on a plane which was about to take off for a domestic flight from Dallas to Nashville.

It all started when he was asked to lift his tray up for take-off, at which point he claimed to be infected by COVID-19.

This obviously didn't go down well, and the cabin crew called for reinforcements.

As a result, police and a crew in hazmat suits removed him from the plane and tried to reassure travellers.

The story was reported by local Nashville TV station WKRN, who spoke to one of the passengers. He said:

People were freaked out because nobody knew what was going on. People didn’t know if he was actually sick or if he really didn’t have coronavirus or not.

Despite reassurances from officials, cabin crew were still reluctant to fly the plane, which led to an eight-hour delay. The flight was supposed to land in Nashville at 8:40pm Saturday but didn’t get there until 4:40 on Sunday morning.

According to reports the man was arrested by making a false claim.

Another passenger explained:

Right after he was escorted off the plane, one of the cops came back and kind of explained the situation to the people that were sitting near him and kind of spelled it out for us and told us not to worry about it and really was just talking about how he was joking about having the coronavirus.

As governments try to contain the spread of the virus, planes present a particular challenge given "social distancing" isn't really possible.

HT: NYPost

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