You didn’t have as stressful a day as JetBlue’s PR staff.
On Tuesday morning, a JetBlue flight from New York to Las Vegas was diverted to Amarillo, Texas, after the captain reportedly flipped out
. He walked to the back of the plane and returned to the cockpit door, which he started beating while screaming about bombs, Iraq, Afghanistan, and more.
The TSA described his behavior as "erratic."
Passengers subdued the captain, and someone on the flight caught part of the action on video and uploaded it to YouTube:
Later, passengers described the bizarre and frightening experience to reporters in Amarillo.
“They're going to take us down, they're taking us down, they're going to take us down. Say the Lord's prayer, say the Lord's prayer," the captain screamed, according to passenger Tony Antolino, who was quoted in a CBS News/AP report
JetBlue posted a statement to its blog saying
“The pilot in command elected to divert to Amarillo, TX for a medical situation involving the captain. Another captain, traveling off duty, entered the flight deck prior to landing at Amarillo, and took over the duties of the ill crewmember. The aircraft arrived Amarillo at 10:11 am CT, and the crewmember was removed from the aircraft and taken to a local medical facility.
“Customers have safely deplaned and we’re sending a new aircraft and crew to Amarillo to continue the flight to Las Vegas.”
The airline has continued to update its blog with information about the incident.
Several commenters slammed JetBlue for “spinning” the situation, although other commenters urged readers to hold their opinions until all of the facts were released.
JetBlue CEO Dave Barger appeared on the "Today" show on Wednesday. Host Matt Lauer asked him about the blog:
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On Twitter, the company responded to tweets about the incident
, referring people to the blog post.
In a tweet on Tuesday night, GM's former social media manager offered JetBlue's social
media staff some words of encouragement. "Hang in there!" Christopher
. "Know that today's been a tough day for you. Feeling your pain, gang. Hope you're all holding up."