Passengers on American Eagle flight 4891 from New York’s La Guardia airport en route to Cleveland were already running 2 hours late when the pilot asked the flight attendant to advise the passengers that the aircraft would be diverted to Toledo. The reason given was “an emergency has shutdown Cleveland Hopkins Airport”.
Once the plane landed, passengers whipped out their mobile phones, expecting the need to make plans to get to their final destination, only to discover that the pilot had played a prank on them. There was no “emergency” and the plane has actually landed exactly where it was supposed to be.
Needless to say that some of the passengers didn’t share his sense of humor. American Eagle has confirmed the incident, and claims the matter is now “a personnel issue”. Fingers crossed for the pilot that someone at HQ understands the need for a joke every now and then.
I’ve been on the receiving end of a couple of cockpit pranks before, but I can’t say I’ve ever run into a pilot who tricked his entire plane into thinking they were going to land somewhere else.
What are your thoughts on this? Would you laugh it off, or immediately write a letter demanding one million miles?
(Image source: Flickr/Geir. W)