In a month of non-stop airline controversies, Delta Airlines is proving it can also treat passengers like carry on bags!
Kima Hamilton was traveling from Atlanta to Milwaukee on April 18 when his tiny bladder got him into big trouble with flight staff.
Delta Flight 2035 was taxied to the runway when the incident went down, and the passengers were told they were third in line to take off, which is a time when everyone is supposed to remain seated.
After the wait extended to about 30 minutes, the 39-year-old DJ and poet felt a strong need to relieve his bladder and headed to the restroom near the back of the plane.
A flight attendant in the back told Hamilton they would lose their place in line if he used the restroom, so he sat back down. The urge to urinate, however, grew stronger — and the passenger returned to the restroom to quickly take a tinkle.
That’s when shit got turbulent. Hamilton told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel:
“The pilot came on and said, ‘Ladies and gentlemen, I’m sorry for the inconvenience but we have to return to the gate and remove a passenger.’ It escalated to that point that fast.”
Two Delta agents approached Hamilton and told him to get his things and “talk about this outside,” the passenger refused — as he had a feeling they wouldn’t let him back on.
That’s when passengers whipped out their phones (in anticipation of a Dr. David Dao-style showdown) and took video of the encounters. Soon, everyone was escorted off the plane and Hamilton was brought into questioning at the terminal.
Delta partially refunded his ticket, told him his checked luggage would be waiting for him in Milwaukee, and left him to find another way back home.
Hamilton bought a walk-up ticket — at three times the cost he was refunded — on a Southwest Airlines flight. He arrived home several hours later than he had planned.
Hamilton says he was feeling the micro-aggression he sometimes experiences as a tall black man with dreadlocks, and thinks staying calm on the plane and during questioning prevented him from getting arrested for causing a disturbance.
Fellow passengers were outraged in Delta’s handling of the situation. Milwaukee lawyer Krista Rosolino, who was sitting across the aisle from Hamilton, sweared to never fly Delta again.
In an open letter to the company on Facebook, she questioned if the color of Hamilton’s skin led the airline to mistrust him. Other passengers were also sympathetic toward Hamilton, with some talking about staying in their seats in protest when everyone was asked to leave the plane.
Delta responded to the incident on Wednesday, issuing the following statement:
“Our flight crews are extensively trained to ensure the safety and security of all customers. It is imperative that passengers comply with crew instructions during all phases of flight, especially at the critical points of takeoff and landing.”
We guess they’d rather have passengers piss themselves than break their dumb protocol?
Watch the incident go down for yourself (below) and let us know what U think.
[Image via YouTube.]