Jul 05, 2008 News
An apparently drunk disembarking passenger on Delta Airlines flight DL 383 from New York to Georgetown blew the emergency exit door, sending him down the emergency exit slide and onto the tarmac of the CBJ Airport.
This occurred yesterday morning at approximately 07:30 am, even as other passengers were disembarking the aircraft.
Reports state that, because of the action by the passenger, the departing Delta Airlines flight for yesterday was postponed until today.
One of the stranded passengers told Kaieteur News that while sitting in the departure lounge yesterday, she noticed many of the outbound passengers moving to another part of the departure lounge and looking through the windows onto the tarmac.
Upon querying, she was told by Delta Airlines staff members that an incoming passenger had apparently ‘opened the emergency exit.’
Another one of the stranded passengers confirmed that he had been told that the man was intoxicated.
“He (the man who blew the emergency exit door) got drunk; that’s what we were told,” said the stranded passenger.
Delta Airlines was very accommodating, explained another of the stranded passengers. She explained that Delta staff told them after the incident occurred that they “would wait an hour and then we will tell you what we are going to do.”
Delta Airlines has provided the stranded passengers with accommodation for the night.
A source at the airport described the stranded outbound passengers as having varying levels of anger and frustration.
Delta Airlines has reportedly told the stranded passengers that the flight would leave today at the same time it was supposed to depart yesterday.
Meanwhile, there has been a general increase in airfares for flights coming to Guyana, and special notice of this phenomenon is being taken by the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports.
Yesterday, Minister Frank Anthony told the media those persons who have already booked their tickets for entry into the country to be part of Carifesta X have informed him that the prices have indeed increased.
The minister said that this may be as a result of rising fuel prices on the global market.
He pointed out, nonetheless, that his ministry has been working along with the Ministry of Tourism to add additional flights to Guyana for Carifesta.
According to Dr. Anthony, efforts are also being made to examine the possibility of having special rates arranged by these airlines during Carifesta.
Yesterday, Kaieteur News was told that the rates for a flight from New York to Trinidad and Tobago are much cheaper when compared to those of a flight to Guyana.
Commenting on this, the minister said that it may be a case of airlines capitalizing on the mega-event that Guyana is about to host.
He, however, added that he cannot make a definite determination of this fact.
And even as the airfare rises, Delta Airlines have had two major delays over the past week.
On July 1 and July 2, the airlines had two setbacks that saw the flights leaving Cheddi Jagan International Airport some two hours behind schedule.
Kaieteur News was told that many persons who had connecting flights in New York missed those flights.
Among them was Guyana’s Minister of Agriculture, Robert Persaud, who was on his way to London for an official meeting.
Persaud was placed on another flight but, according to sources, chose to return to Guyana since he would not have made it in time for a proper contribution to the meeting.
When contacted, Junior Horatio of Delta’s local office in Georgetown said that there was indeed a delay on July 1 and again on July 2.
He was, however, quick to tell this newspaper that such a delay was not a ‘news story,’ since all the persons with connecting flights from New York were placed on later flights leaving that city.
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