In one of the more bizarre AvGeek scenes I’ve seen on Twitter lately a passenger asked if the pilot was “drunk when he decided to go off route and into countless sharp turns” on approach into JFK last Thursday. When faced with reality – that airplanes fly specific routes to get to airports – she went off the rails, calling pretty much everyone presenting contrary evidence a troll and blocking them from her account.
Was that just a phrase used in jest? Seems not, as the follow up messages continue to insist the whole thing was a massive screw up and put passengers at risk, going so far as to pay to promote tweets to that effect. Even more bizarre is that she claims to be a reporter but struggles with the concept of communicating with sources and verifying facts.
Surprised a reporter wouldn't want to learn more about something that scared her. It's almost like there's some sort of "approach pattern". pic.twitter.com/oLTAgEC81o
— Ian Petchenik (@petchmo) July 4, 2017
Even after American replied (only to the initial idiocy) she continued to claim that the company did not address the issue and that other crazy factors are in play.
We can whole-heartedly assure you the pilots were following directions from the local atc tower.
— americanair (@AmericanAir) June 29, 2017
Yes, the plane was headed straight for JFK then went around the airport, out over the ocean and looped back to land on 22L. Just like ATC would instruct the pilot to do. In an email it seems she finally accepted that ATC may have given those instructions but believes they were “unauthorized” rather than legit.
— Ryan Ewing (@FlyingHighRyan) July 5, 2017
She also seems to think that she still owns the rights to the content of that email even after sending it to someone else, so add that to the mounting evidence of an unfortunate separation from reality.
And normally I don’t really care about a crazy person with 1200 followers on twitter being crazy. But this one started with accusing the crew of being drunk. And that’s a very, very touchy subject. It is the sort of thing that can screw up a flight or a bunch of flights. It also can really screw with a crewmember. I doubt that AA is going to follow up on this incident, especially given that it was a completely normal operation. But I do know that other security-ish comments made via Twitter are taken very seriously. Pulling passengers or crew off of flights isn’t something airlines like to talk about but it can and does happen, sometimes because of tweets. So seeing the drunk pilot accusations here really bothers me.
Perhaps just ignoring the idiocy would be a smarter play. That’s what American Airlines seems to be doing and with good reason. But the drunk part pisses me off.
Oh, and she’s now switched her account to locked because the feedback she’s received is so overwhelming. Oops.
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