A man was removed by armed police for making a joke on a flight from Sacramento to Austin. By all accounts (except for one flight attendant) the man made an innocent joke about a bottle of water and he got into serious trouble. This is insane.
The following story is going viral and seems to be valid because it's all the passengers that are taking the man's side over the flight attendant. Here's our best interpretation of what went down on the Southwest flight as told to Yahoo Lifestyle.
Things were tense. Because of maintenance issues, waiting for fuel, and heavy air traffic, the plane was sitting on the tarmac 3-4 hours. Ugh.
A flight attendant started passing around bottles of water. That's when one passenger joked, “Wow, I hope that’s vodka because we’ve been sitting here for so long.”
The flight attendant gruffly said, "Yeah, it's vodka."
When she had gotten farther down the aisle, he joked, "hey, this isn't vodka."
The Southwest attendant stormed back up to confront the passenger and started berating him. The female passenger sitting next to the vodka jokester (who didn't know him) told the attendant, ‘We’re all tired here. And that’s no way to speak to a passenger." Then those two got into it.
Other passengers said the flight attendant walked to the front of the plane. They made a phone call. Next thing they headed back to the gate where Sacramento County Sheriffs came onto the plane and took the vodka jokester off the plane.
Witness Peter Uzelac, 70, said, “I stood up and told the officer that the flight attendant started all the trouble and other people shouted that the man did nothing wrong.”
When he eventually exited the jet, he said the flight attendant just smirked at him.
Gotta say this is really atypical of Southwest employees. Everyone on the show agreed they've never had a bad experience with a Southwest employee. This sounds like one bad employee, or a decent one having a bad day.
Southwest gave a statement.
“We regret any less-than-positive experience a Customer has onboard our aircraft. We welcome over 100 million Customers each year, and we aim to maintain the comfort of all while delivering Southwest Hospitality. We will share this report with our Customer Relations Team.”
Uzelac told Yahoo, “Flying is almost scary because you don’t know who you’re going to anger,” he says. “You can’t say anything to anyone.”