Sunday’s United Airlines flight (Boeing 767) from Dulles International Airport to Ghana had to return back to Dulles after fist fight among passengers. The reason – a passenger hitting the recline button that annoyed the passenger behind him. It started with a smack to the head resulting in people diving all over the cabin to intervene and finally a pair of Air Force F-16 fighter jets escorting the plane back to Washington DC. The flight had 144 passengers on board.
Not long after the 10:44 p.m. departure for the overnight flight, the offending seat was lowered into the offended lap, and a fight ensued. A flight attendant and another passenger jumped in between, said sources familiar with the incident who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to provide details.
The pilot has complete authority over the aircraft, a United spokesman said, and he decided to return to Dulles to sort things out rather than continue the transatlantic flight to Ghana when he was unsure of the scope of the problem.Source: www.washingtonpost.com
F-16 fighter jets were scrambled as a precaution.
At 11:10 p.m., the controller asked about the passenger who slapped his neighbor, and a voice from the cockpit replied: “The passenger is not secured at this time; the passenger has settled down, though, but an assault has taken place, but at this time he is not secured.”Source: www.washingtonpost.com
No charges were filed and the flight was delayed till Monday.