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  • 19

Sunwing flight to Cuba forced back to Toronto after disruption

Soumis
 
A Sunwing Airlines flight headed to Cuba was forced to turn back to Toronto’s Pearson airport Wednesday after an apparent disruption by two passengers. A NORAD spokesperson confirmed to CTV News that two Canadian fighter jets escorted the passenger aircraft back to Toronto’s Pearson International Airport. Earlier reports suggest the plane was near Florida when it had to turn around. Police said two female suspects were arrested. (www.ctvnews.ca) Plus d'info...

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canuck44
canuck44 7
A little time in a Cuban jail and a no fly classification would have been more appropriate. If the aircraft was over northern Florida it had only an hour and a bit to land in Cuba rather than turn around even though convention says the flight remains under Canadian control.
CaptainFreedom
CaptainFreedom 3
I was thinking the same thing. We need to get a little better at assessing risk and analyzing threats. This response, particularly the fighter escort, seems like an absurd response to 2 drunk girls who don't give a hoot about anyone else. Continuing the flight and turning them over to Cuban authorities would have been a better response.
siriusloon
siriusloon 4
When it was just two drunks yelling at each other and the cabin crew decided the threat against the aircraft was "non-credible because of their condition", why was it necessary to scramble two fighters? If it's a hijacking, or a suspected one, or a credible bomb threat, then scramble them, but for something like this, someone in the NORAD food chain should have the discretion to decide it's unnecessary. Escorting an airliner is only necessary if it can be flown off course or crashed. They're not going to shoot it down because a couple of drunks are duking it out in the aisle. If they could even see the escorting fighters, do you think they were intimidated or cared or that anyone else aboard the jet felt safer?

And if the aircraft really was so potentially dangerous that it had to be escorted, why did it fly all the way from Florida to Toronto to land? Given their range, there's no way the CF-18s flew all the way from CFB Bagotville to the southern U.S. and probably only met it near Toronto. If even Uncle Sam didn't feel a need to escort it, there was no need for the Harper Regime to do it.

Instead of hitting the panic button every time, there should be a calm, measured, and rational response that can be escalated if necessary. In this case, it was obvious from the start that the aircraft was neither in danger itself nor did it pose any danger and the fighter escort was a complete waste of time, effort, and money. What if they'd been needed for something more serious elsewhere?
Funk499
Max Power 2
Flight hours are usually heavily limited by budget. There however would be no limit on hours for scrambling to deal with a list of sensitive issues. Probably figured it would be nice to get into the air without having to account for it to the clerks.
wopri
Maybe NORAD figured they could need the exercise?
stevooz
steve rogers 3
its ironic , if this tiff was bad enough to send the plane back to Toronto but not bad enough to land at the nearest airport , then was it really worth wasting all this fuel and passengers time ? what next , plane get sent back , passenger complained about the peanuts ? maybe a little more people skills on the part of the crew and less panic would have defused this situation and saved a whole lot of money and time .
blizzard007
Mark Robertson 2
Toronto was probably deemed the nearest airport to land at due to the fact the plane was headed to Cuba. I'm sure the plane would have landed at a US airport if the flight was destined for the Dominican or Mexico.
vanstaalduinenj
Ok
The real question here is why the heck they allow these 2 to get so gassed on the plane?
Duty free booze? Why would they allow them access to that?
Sunwing must bare some blame for this
wopri
The txt says they tanked up on the booze in the lavatory, hard to prevent that.
CaptainFreedom
CaptainFreedom 2
but Sunwing gave them the booze. They could have waited until just before descent to pass out the duty free booze.
blizzard007
Mark Robertson 2
Incorrect.. they would have bought the duty free booze at the airport terminal and when that is done passengers get given it as they board the plane. The alcohol wasn't even sold or provided by Sunwing
wopri
I agree, but then the next idiots could simply buy booze at the duty free in the airport, put it in their carry-on luggage and play the same story over.
jowlj3
Jim Anderson 2
No fly worldwide for eternity. And $20 grand fine each or 90 days in slammer.
Nuff said!!
vanstaalduinenj
Sunwing had a similiar (yet different) issue a few weeks ago with a guy with some documented mental health issues and they reaction was again very much overkill.
I guess we like flexing our puny muscles up here in Canada
Seems wasteful to me
WtfWtf
WtfWtf 1
Charge these Aholes for fuel and inconvenience.
siriusloon
siriusloon 3
People flying on Sunwing to Cuba are unlikely to be able to afford to ever pay a fraction of the full cost, so sending them a bill isn't going to achieve much, unfortunately. At least they can be put on the no-fly list and the U.S. can refuse them entry, so they'll be paying that kind of price and not getting away with their behaviour completely untouched.
mikekenny427
michael kenny 2
Charges were laid yesterday (28th)....quoted from a website.

"Peel regional police said Lilia Ratmanski, 25, of Whitby, and Milana Muzikante, 26, of Vaughan, face five charges each, including smoking on board an aircraft, endangering the safety of an aircraft, mischief endangering life, and uttering threats."

On this mornings news, I thought I heard another charge pending which had a maximum jail sentence of 5 years.

Doesn't help the passengers with lost vacation time or Sunwing with cost of expenses, but up to 5 years in jail will at least be justice served.
Funk499
Max Power 1
I dunno if 5 years is really warranted. I know the air traffic thing is pretty sensitive these days thanks to those silly terrorists, but honestly, prison doesn't straighten people like this out. It'll probably just screw them up more.

Non violent crimes don't deserve long hard time.
mikekenny427
michael kenny 2
I don't disagree that 5 years is too long (didn't mean to imply it was ok in my post), but as stated above, some folks want to start the hard partying too early, and all the others pay the price.

On a recent flight to Panama, the head steward had to announce "....if you continue to harass and touch the stewardess', you will be reported to Panamanian authorities on touchdown, and your vacation will be cancelled". Nice.

It's bizarre really - 7 days of free alcohol, and a few lunatics have to get pinned in the first 30 minutes. And we all know the administrative answer to this...no duty free on the plane, and no alcohol served....i.e. too bad for the 99.9% of folks acting normally.

So, 5 years medium security time - agree, too hard. XXX days, served on weekends or providing charitable service in the community, and $YYY dollars? Absolutely.
wopri
As they are from Canada, they could well be sentenced to give their to "Operation Red Nose". Would really make them realize how stupid people can be when they're drunk.

http://operationnezrouge.com/en/about/mission/
wopri
Sorry, "give their time..."
wopri
And lets not forget that keeping someone in prison is a lot more expensive than keeping someone in university.
stevooz
steve rogers 1
nothing new there , some folks unfortunately like starting the party too early , all other passengers have to pay the price .
stevooz
steve rogers 1
maybe fly all the drunks on Conair .

amh500
R Hubert 1
This Plane was off the coast of Florida when it turned around. Given the "urgency", Why didn't they land in Miami?? Why all the way back to Toronto?, and, since the cockpit was not breached (thus in communication with the ground), why was it necessary do dispatch two F-18's
blizzard007
Mark Robertson 2
I believe that has to do with the fact that it was a plane bound for Cuba. Remeber planes cannot fly from the US to Cuba and vise-versa
vanstaalduinenj
Ok
Why not wait till the end of the flight to give them the booze????
Also, not a smoker but have in the past, petty addictive, add some booze I pretty get why they lit one up.
Not excusing it just understanding it
Funk499
Max Power 2
Apparently it was their duty free liquor, ie. they bought it and carried on themselves.
vanstaalduinenj
Ya prison is silly in this case....
Hello "no fly" list for 10 years
Hello "never" crossing the American Border
Oh and slap a 20k$ fine on each to recoup some of the massive expense sunwing, raf, and maybe even other passengers
Lesson: Learned
stevooz
steve rogers 1
makes you wonder why booze is allowed on flights in the first place , it seems to me the problem has gotten worst over the years , if you need something to calm you down take a pill , oh ya I forgot , its a source of revenue for airlines ....
racegirl88
Colleen Norris 1
I am flying Sunwing in a few weeks to Cuba. If that happened on my plane those idiots would have been better with Canadian or Cuba jail than alone with me!! Those idiots deserve a little while away from flying and definitely a no fly from Sunwing.

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