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How flight attendants have turned into bouncers

The good ones though...

While demand for air travel continues to skyrocket, so too does air rage apparently. According to figures sighted by the BBC, incidents of air rage on UK airlines at least, have quadrupled over a three-year period, with the number of temper tantrums rising to an average of more than one a day.


Cabin crew training in Chengdu, China


The Civil Aviation Authority data showed there were 386 dangerous incidents in 2015, compared to just 85 in 2013. And there doesn’t seem to be a shortage of incidents involving Aussie flyers either (this writer has seen at least two episodes of air rage on flights ex-Oz this year alone).


So what’s been the main reason for the meteoric rise in air rage? Some psychologists blame people’s lack of control and territorial instincts for bad behaviour, while more than one study has pointed to the class divide on planes. While it’s most likely a combination of factors, the main assertion, unsurprisingly, is that alcohol and drugs fuel it.


A flight attendant who goes by the pseudonym “Dan Air” said that the last two or three years have gotten a lot worse, especially when drinks and drugs are involved.


“People a lot of the time don't actually realise they're on board an aircraft,” Dan told the BBC.


“I think a lot of the time people think that they're in a club or in a bar.


“They behave like animals. You can't believe your eyes some of the things that you're seeing.


“Now we're getting to the point where we're having to be bouncers.”


As a consequence of booze-filled trouble, low cost carrier recently announced it would be banning alcohol on early-morning flights in a move believed to be the first for a European airline. 


According to International Air Transport Association (IATA) figures, there were some 10,000 reported incidents of air rage last year alone, with one in four mentioning drugs or alcohol as a trigger.


Written by: Mark Harada
Published: 18 September 2016

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