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Qantas flyers do ‘security’ on diverted flight

Disruptive passenger hides in toilet for an hour

A London-bound Qantas flight was forced to return to Perth after a passenger became highly disruptive. 


QF9 was around two hours into its journey when the plane’s captain made the decision to turn around. 


Travelling with her husband and three-month-old baby, witness Clare Hudson told the ABC the agitant had locked himself in the lavatory for about an hour before confronting fellow flyers. 


Image Clare Hudson, Source ABC


After hearing some shouting from her seat three to four rows away, Ms Hudson said he then “squared off” with another passenger, “shouting in his face”. 


“It looked like it was going to turn into a brawl. Eventually they managed to calm him down and get him back in his seat,” she said. 


“He seemed really wired and agitated. One of the cabin crew, one of the ladies, I think was a bit upset. But for us, luckily, we were far enough away that we didn't feel threatened.”


Another flyer, Christine Kohli said passengers were asked to help try to calm the man.


"They did ask for some assistance from some male passengers, and some passengers went and helped him,” she told the ABC. 


“I understand he was restrained down the back of the plane."


But Ms Kohli praised the “marvellous” crew for being “very in control of the situation, they were calming passengers”.


“They were very, very supportive. They got him down to the back of the plane quite quickly. It was clear he was quite an unwell man."


As well as praising flight crew for their calmness and decision to turn the plane around, passenger Robyn Guengerich thought her fellow flyers had also acted well. 


"The passengers were all very accepting of that [turning around],” she said. 


“I mean it was typical Aussie. I was proud of how all the passengers behaved." 


The Australian Federal Police (AFP) confirmed it had removed a 32-year-old man from the flight. 


Written by: Mark Harada
Published: 10 September 2018

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