According to a union leader, a Southwest Airlines flight attendant had two of her teeth knocked out by an unruly passenger over the weekend.
In a letter to the airline’s CEO, Lyn Montgomery, the president of TWU Local 556, said that the flight attendant was “seriously assaulted, resulting in injuries to the face and the loss of two teeth.”
According to a Southwest official, the frightening incident occurred on Sunday morning after an aircraft from Sacramento landed in San Diego.
According to the spokesman, Chris Mainz, a female passenger “repeatedly disobeyed standard inflight instructions and became verbally and physically abusive upon landing.”
When the jet arrived in San Diego, police were summoned, and the passenger was apprehended, according to Mainz.
A woman dressed in leopard-print leggings and a sweater was escorted off the plane by police officers from the San Diego Port Authority, according to a video posted on Facebook.
The woman apparently became furious when the flight attendant urged her to keep her seatbelt secured while the plane was still moving, according to Susan Marie Stidham, who posted the video.
“What I saw was the front flight attendant suddenly start screaming ‘No, No, No!’ Stidham wrote, “‘Stop!’ and running toward the back.” “The woman in the back of the plane was punching the flight attendant in the head.”
“We were all told to stay in our seats while they brought in police to remove the unruly passenger while the flight attendant was staggering back with a bloody face.”
Vyvianna Quinonez, 28, was recognized as the passenger by San Diego Harbor Police on Tuesday, and she was charged with battery inflicting serious bodily injury, a crime, according to local media.
The flight attendant, who has not been identified, was taken to a hospital for treatment before being released. Southwest says it sent a buddy to be with her in San Diego.
Montgomery emphasized in a letter to CEO Gary Kelly on Sunday that this was only one of the hundreds of recent events involving rowdy passengers.
The union chief said, “The unprecedented number of incidents has reached an intolerable level, with passenger non-compliance events also becoming more aggressive in nature.”
Between April 8 and May 15, she added, there were 477 “passenger misconduct incidents” on Southwest airlines.
Montgomery requested Kelly to persuade federal officials to increase the number of federal air marshals on flights and to prohibit passengers who break the rules rather than rebooking them.
“Let us join forces to improve personal safety and security across the industry and restore some stability to our working lives,” she wrote.