Some Of The Many Ways To Get Kicked Off A Plane

planeWhen getting ready for take-off of any flight, we can take our seat promptly upon boarding the plane, stow our gear, be courteous to our fellow travelers and use electronic devices until instructed to power them down. Those activities are all just fine. On the other hand, smoking in the lavatory, joking about bombs or otherwise disrupting operation of the aircraft are serious matters that can get us kicked off the plane. But what other actions taken on board a commercial airliner can get us in trouble?

Checking in with Law.com‘s legal blog watch, the list is long.

  • Stripping naked or saying the F-word can get you escorted off the plane.
  • Get into a fist fight with the passenger in front of you who reclines their seat in the air and the pilot may turn the plane around and return to the airport, escorted by a pair of F-16 fighter jets
  • Pretending to be a soldier to get a complimentary upgrade to first class can not only get you kicked off the plane, but result in being arrested. The charge: second-degree impersonation.
  • Inhaling from an electronic cigarette or throwing bags of snacks at flight attendants can result in a charge of “interference with the flight crew,” a federal offense that will cause the FBI to greet you when the plane lands.
  • Take a photo of the name tag of a less-than-helpful flight crew member can get you on the No-Fly list, if not arrested.
  • Dress code violations like wearing short denim shorts that make it unclear whether ladies are wearing panties, especially when those shorts are worn with a baggy T-shirt can get you kicked off the plane.
  • Breastfeeding and children can be a problem. Breastfeeding without being covered up can result in public humiliation and threats of removal from the plane. In the same folder we find that children must behave. Throwing a fit on the plane may result in a return to the gate and the child’s entire family being removed from the plane for the safety of all customers and crew members on board.
  • Be careful what you watch on electronic devices. Passengers are not allowed to view what might be deemed “horrific” child pornography on their laptop during the flight. Do so and be apprehended by police upon landing and charged with possession of child pornography.

“You might think that after (21 volumes) of Things You Can’t Do on a Plane, that we’d have exhausted the list of things you can’t do on a plane,” says Legal Blog Watch. “Nope! The list grows daily.”

American Airlines, U.S. Airways $11 Billion Deal



[Photo credit - Flickr user Nigel Horsley]

No Hassle Flying Act To Save Time, Safely, For Some

hassleCutting down on the hassle of flying internationally, the No-Hassle Flying Act of 2012 aims to eliminate excessive security screening of connecting baggage at U.S. airports. Currently, checked baggage on all inbound international flights has to be re-screened before being transferred to connecting U.S. flights. To help with holiday travel, congress has a plan.

“As thousands of Americans travel internationally this holiday season, too many will have to deal with the hassle of rescreening their luggage,” said Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) in an ABC News Report. “Requiring luggage to undergo the exact same screening process twice in one trip puts a burden on both our international aviation security system and travelers.”

The No-Hassle Flying Act of 2012 is not a one-size-fits-all move. If signed into law, TSA officials would have the ability to waive re-screening of luggage coming off some international flights, using their discretion.Baggage from some international airports undergoes the same high-level screening procedures used at U.S. airports. Right now, U.S. Customs and Border Protection performs U.S. border inspection and clearance of commercial air passengers at 14 airports in Canada, the Caribbean and Ireland. Baggage that has passed through the security system at those airports would not be required to have an additional screening before being transferred to connecting U.S. flights.

Not happy yet? Either is Dan Dicks of Press For Truth who went to the Buffalo International airport in an attempt to help raise awareness about what he believes are intrusive and invasive TSA procedures, as we see in this video:




[Photo Credit- Flickr user Inha Leex Hale]

Best Anti-Drug Poster Ever Found In Santander, Spain

anti-drug poster
I was at my local Sanidad Exterior here in Santander, Spain, getting some medicine for an upcoming trip when I spotted this wonderful poster. It reads: “If you bring drugs aboard the plane they’ll cook you lobster and the captain will let you fly.”

The next line reads: “If you believe that taking drugs is the solution to your problems you’ll believe anything.”

This brightened up an otherwise boring wait to see the doctor. While I don’t buy the myth that “all drugs are evil and need to be banned for your own good,” I do think this poster is a quick remedy for stoners who think they can flout international law and common sense just because they’re seeing the world on daddy’s credit card. It’s a big world out there, kids, and it’s just as interesting with a clear head.

Spain has come up with some other fun warnings on the dangers of travel. Last year, I wrote about another anti-drug poster.

[Image courtesy Ministerio de Sanidad, Servicios Sociales e Igualdad]

Fake Pilot Arrested After Flying Across Europe

fake pilotPolice in Italy have arrested a man for impersonating a pilot and fooling the crew and ground staff into letting him into the cockpit of a European flight, the BBC reports.

A man managed to pose as a pilot using a uniform and fake ID and fly in the cockpit of an Air Dolomiti flight from Munich to Turin on April 6. Reportedly he flew as a “third pilot” and did not touch the controls.

Police, who have not revealed the man’s name, say he is jobless. They are now investigating his motives. They’re also checking to see if he managed to become a “crew member” of any other flights. He was arrested at Turin airport and was found to be in possession of uniforms similar to those worn by pilots but lacking an airline logo, a fake ID and fake flight manuals.

The man used the alias Andrea Sirlo and even created a Facebook page for himself with fake flight attendants as friends.

The website Myflightbook lists Andrew Sirlo as the pilot on a Munich-Turin flight on October 23, 2011.

Bungling airport security seems to be a regular feature here on Gadling. We’ve covered a number of stories such as a child boarding an international flight without a ticket or passport, TSA workers claiming body scanners cause cancer, and an elderly woman being put on the wrong flight.

[Image courtesy Wikimedia Commons]

Admiring Greenland From The Air While Freaking Out An Air Marshal

Greenland
Intercontinental flights are usually pretty dull. The route between London and Chicago, however, is one I always look forward to. That’s because it flies over the southern tip of Greenland. The airplane heads northwest over Ireland, then arcs across the North Atlantic, barely missing Iceland before crossing Greenland.

I always seem to be lucky with the weather and get a clear view of the jagged coastline of fjords and glacial screes. The last time I flew that route the weather was especially fine. The water below sparkles a pale sapphire, reflecting the sun so brightly that it stings my eyes. Scattered across the ocean are the white dots of ice floes. Some are surrounded by water colored an emerald green. At first I don’t know what I’m looking at until I see several white dots clustered close together, with emerald both between and surrounding them, and I realize that I’m seeing icebergs, their tips white and their submerged parts green in the sea water.

Further inland, massive glaciers glint in the sunlight. There are no roads or buildings on the land, and no boats on the water. No people anywhere.

“Are you looking at the other plane?” a voice asks behind me.

“Huh?” I reply, not too eloquently. Then I notice another plane a little above us and far off to our right. I frown at it like it’s an unwelcome intruder. I don’t want to see evidence of people here.

“Um, no, I’m looking at Greenland,” I reply with a bit more coherence.

I’m standing at the emergency exit door looking out the porthole because the grumpy guy sitting at the window seat in my row is more interested in watching an inflight movie and wants the window closed.

“Why do you need to stand here to do that?” the person standing behind me asks.

After griping about the idiocy of the guy in my row, I launch into an enthusiastic monologue about how I’ve always wanted to go to Greenland, how I’ve eagerly read explorer’s tales and Inuit folklore, that this was one of the few truly wild places left on Earth and it’s my dream to someday trek across it.

“Really.” His response comes out flat, suspicious.

I turn around and look at the person I’m talking to for the first time. Behind me stands a burly man with a buzz cut. He’s studying me closely.

This is an air marshal, I realize, and while everyone else is sleeping or watching movies I’m standing by the emergency exit.

Suddenly I see the situation from his perspective. He’s trying to decide whether I’m an eccentric nutcase or a terrorist. I prefer to have him think I’m an eccentric nutcase. I launch into an even more enthusiastic monologue about Norwegian explorer Fridtjof Nansen’s first skiing expedition across Greenland in 1888, and the Norse settlements there that served as a base for Viking exploration of North America. Then I talk about the natural history of the island. My hopes of making it to the United States as a free man rise as I watch his eyes glaze over.

“Whatever,” he says with a shrug and walks off. He hasn’t even glanced out the window.

I go back to watching the glaciers below and dreaming of my next adventure.

[Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons]