250 United Airlines passengers taken hostage in freezing temperature by Canadian Authorities
Are Americans are no longer welcome in Labrador, Canada? The Canadian Government has shown how a bureaucratic interpretation can create an international incident. Instead of showing hospitality Canadian authorities made the forced stay for 250 passengers onboard a stranded United Airlines aircraft at Goose Bay Airport a nightmare.
Their compensation: Donuts.
The Canadian Government is not closed down, as it is in the U.S. Shame on Canada.
There should be absolutely no reason in any civilized country to have passengers of a plane at any airport forced to be onboard for 17 hours in freezing temperature and with no food. A United Airlines plane diverted to Goose Bay Airport in Labrador, Canada Saturday night resulted in a 16-hour stay on the tarmac, according to tweets by passengers who were stranded on the aircraft.
After a wait of about 16 hours, a rescue plane touched down around noon local time, and travellers reported they were transported to the alternate plane by bus after 2 p.m. AT.
The plane took off for Newark Liberty International Airport shortly before 4 p.m.
In a statement to CBC News, the airline says United Flight 179 traveling from Newark, N.J., to Hong Kong was originally diverted to Goose Bay, N.L., due to a medical emergency, where medical personnel met the plane and brought the passenger to the hospital.
However, a mechanical issue prevented the plane from taking off again. Passengers were not able to leave the aircraft because customs officers were not available overnight, United said.
The airline told CBC News 250 passengers were on board.
The airline believes cold weather caused a door on the plane to malfunction, preventing takeoff. Happy Valley-Goose Bay is currently grappling with an extreme cold warning issued by Environment Canada, with temperatures dipping below -30 C.
Other passengers on board tweeted out complaints to United, wondering why they had been told a replacement plane was in the air and were not informed of further delays. Dutt said a pilot told passengers to email United’s CEO with complaints about communication practices.
A Twitter account sprang up Sunday morning poking fun at the situation.
Temperatures on the plane quickly plummeted to “uncomfortable” levels, said passenger Sonjay Dutt, a professional wrestler en route to Hong Kong for a show.
Crew handed out blankets, but according to Dutt, they were able to offer little else to assuage mounting anger from passengers.
The airline said it had food delivered to the plane and the second aircraft would provide more meals for passengers.
United said it apologizes to its customers and would do everything possible to assist them during the delay.