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Woman turns Melb-Perth service into ‘flight from hell’

Flight forced into emergency landing in Adelaide

A Virgin Australia flight from Melbourne to Perth was diverted to Adelaide after a woman allegedly began threatening to kill people.


Image AAP


One witness told the ABC the passenger started shouting, "Get me off this f***ing plane, don't f***ing come near me, I can't breathe", about an hour into the VA697 flight.


When cabin crew intervened, the woman threatened to kill people if the plane wasn’t stopped.


"[It was a] flight from hell," a passenger told the ABC. "A four-and-a-half-hour flight looks like being a seven- to eight-hour flight."


Some passengers were left frustrated, while others said many travellers including children frightened by the woman’s behaviour.


Upon landing in Adelaide, five Australian Federal Police (AFP) officers escorted the woman off the plane while her baggage was removed and inspected, the ABC reported.


The service had already been running an hour late due to poor weather, but it was four hours overdue by the time it landed in Perth at 3:15am.


"The safety of our guests and crew is always our number one priority," A Virgin Australia spokeswoman said.


"As a result of a disruptive passenger onboard Virgin Australia flight VA697 from Melbourne to Perth, the captain made the decision to divert to Adelaide and the passenger was removed from the aircraft by the Australian Federal Police.


"The aircraft has since landed in Perth this morning and we apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused guests."


The AFP said charges against the woman had yet to be laid.


Written by: Mark Harada
Published: 8 June 2018

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