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Flight Attendants Face a New Safety Threat: Angry Passengers

Written by Ankin Law Office

The increasing number of in-flight injuries caused by angry passengers is a growing concern. Over the past year, flight attendants and passengers have suffered serious injuries due to angry, out-of-control passengers who take their aggression out on people on the plane.

Angry Passengers are Causing Safety Concerns

In-flight injuries are a growing problem. The FAA estimates that over 4,500 people are injured each year from falling luggage alone, and much more suffer because of airline negligence or malfunctioning equipment. Today, there is a new threat to the safety of flight attendants and passengers on aircraft – angry passengers.

According to an International Air Transport survey, airline passengers have become increasingly frustrated with flying due to long lines at ticket counters, airport security measures, higher ticket prices, cramped quarters, and in-flight services. Due to aircraft changes, passengers have lost free meals, in-flight comforts, and get increasingly less legroom, narrower seats and less room to recline. Coupled with stress and anxiety from flying and personal situations, many passengers are taking their anger out on the plane. Flight attendants say that angry passenger are causing safety concerns. Personal and on-the-job injuries filed by flight attendants with a workers comp lawyer have increased significantly over the past year.

  • May 2017 – A fist-fight broke out between two male passengers on a Nippon Airways flight from Japan to Los Angeles. The incident caught on video shows punches being thrown at nearby passengers and flight attendants who tried to intervene. Several passengers and a flight attendant were injured.
  • May 2017 – Two male passengers got into a fist-fight on a Southwest flight during a short layover at the Burbank airport. During the fight over a seat position, one man forced the other over the seats in front of them, injuring several passengers and a flight attendant who was trying to stop the fight.
  • July 2017 – A flight attendant was assaulted by a first-class passenger aboard a Delta Air Lines flight bound for Beijing. The plane was forced to return to the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. A flight attendant along with one injured passenger was transported to a local hospital for medical care.

During the first half of 2017, there have been numerous verbal arguments and physical altercations between flight attendants and passengers on U.S. and international flights. This wave of violence has lead to physical injuries for passengers and flight attendants that have prompted safety investigations by the FAA.