A Chinese passenger has been filmed being wrestled by an airline crew member after she allegedly coughed on them.
The female passenger reportedly became angry after being told that the aircraft was being held for up to 10 hours for coronavirus checks after landing at the Shanghai Pudong Airport in China on the afternoon of March 6, according to NewsFlare.
Shocked passengers said she became irritated after sitting still for several hours then demanded that the staff from the Thai Airways flight open the doors to let her out.
However, after being told she would have to wait, the airline's staff said the woman began swinging her arms and deliberately coughing at one of the female members of staff.
When the woman's rampage continued, a male member of the cabin crew arrived and put her in a headlock to restrain her as seen in the video.
“Come here, help put her down,” he says.
He then asks for handcuffs.
Another cabin assistant arrives and pleads with the woman not to resist.
“Stay down, stay down, please,” he says.
Six cabin crew arrive to restrain her and she later calmed down without being cuffed.
Passengers were eventually let off the flight from Bangkok and went through COVID-19 health checks for passengers from risky countries.
Thai Airways confirmed the incident and said it was caused by the passenger becoming aggressive.
One passenger from Japan, who claimed to have been on the plane, said the male flight attendant came to warn the passenger but the situation escalated as she started to shout and swing her hands.
He said it was a “bureaucratic, dysfunctional mess at Pudong airport” that was “caused by planes having to wait six to 10 hours at the gate after landing with all passengers still onboard”.
“One Chinese woman went stir crazy on a Thai Airways flight and deliberately coughed on a female flight attendant to try to pressure the staff to open the doors and let her out,” he said.
“The senior male flight attendant was having none of it, warned her, then a scuffle ensued. He was going to put her in cuffs, but eventually chose not to.”
Thai Airways confirmed the incident.
Flight lieutenant Prathana Pattanasiri, vice president of Thai's aviation safety department, said the airline was informed at the airport “there were measures to screen passengers with a history of travelling from risky countries such as Italy, South Korea, Japan and Iran”.
“We could not open the doors of the plane until instructed to and health officials came to proceed with checks,” he said.
“Therefore, Thai Airways had to wait for seven hours before officials arrived at the inspection queue.
“The Chinese passenger was upset about being held for a long time and coughed at one of our staff. After she calmed down we explained the situation to her and she agreed to sit and wait for screening.”
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