Two passengers and their dog use emergency slide to exit flight

A US flight was delayed after a man, his travelling companion and his service dog forced open the emergency exit and used the evacuation slide to leave the plane.

Delta flight 462 was taxiing and preparing to depart La Guardia Airport in New York on 21 December when the unnamed passengers decided they no longer wanted to fly.

As the crew readied the aircraft for departure to Atlanta, Georgia, the man stood up and told a flight attendant that he had post-traumatic stress disorder, according to a fellow passenger.

Brian Plummer told the New York Times he had overheard the man say, “If I sit down, I’ll freak out,” after the flight attendant asked him to take his seat.

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He was asked again and refused, walking to the front of the plane, where Mr Plummer could no longer see him.

The aircraft came to a stop shortly after, and cabin crew later explained that the man had opened the cabin door, which automatically triggered the deployment of the emergency slide.  

Both the man and a female passenger, plus his dog, had exited the jet via the slide.

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The couple were taken into custody, while the plane returned to the gate. Travellers deplaned and were accommodated on other flights.

“This doesn’t happen every day at the airport,” said a spokesperson for the New York Port Authority.

The Independent has contacted Delta for comment.

It’s not the first time an aircraft’s slide has been deployed without authorisation.

Last year, a flight from Manchester was delayed by almost eight hours after a passenger mistakenly opened an emergency exit instead of the toilet door.

Pakistan International Airlines‘ (PIA) flight PK702 was ready for an on-time departure to Islamabad at 9.20pm on Friday 7 June. The doors were “armed,” the mode in which the emergency evacuation slide is deployed as soon as a door is opened.

Even though the seatbelt signs were on, a female passenger decided to use the toilet. But she mistakenly opened door L5, at the rear of the aircraft on the left-hand side, rather than the adjacent toilet door.

In a statement, PIA said: “A passenger erroneously opened the emergency door causing the emergency slide to activate.”

Departure was immediately halted, and all the passengers were taken off the aircraft.

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