Georgia Dixon

Domestic Travel

Brisbane-bound Qantas flight forced to turn back to Perth

Brisbane-bound Qantas flight forced to turn back to Perth

Travellers bound for Brisbane on Tuesday night were forced to turn back to Perth after a major disturbance onboard the Qantas flight.

According to a statement from the airline, about one hour into the flight, crew made the decision to return to Perth due to the unruly behaviour of an allegedly drunk traveller. The 38-year-old man from Queensland was dragged off the aircraft after repeatedly failing to follow crew instructions. The man initially refused to disembark, forcing the Australian Federal Police to use tasers to subdue and arrest him.

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A witness claimed the man appeared to be under the influence of alcohol before the flight even departed from Perth. “He was caught with some of his own booze which was taken off him,” they told WAtoday.

“It looked like he has been taking medication because an empty packet of something fell on the ground. I was sitting in front of him and he kept pushing my chair hassling me to buy him a drink because he had been cut off. He was a big nugget of a bloke, but I said, ‘C’mon mate, I don’t want anything to do with this’. He wasn’t being aggressive but he was standing over a few of the female flight attendants asking for more to drink.”

The witness explained the passenger hadn’t even realised the plane had been turned back, but that fellow travellers were “pretty cranky” that their plans had been disrupted.

“The man was subsequently arrested and is expected to be charged with offences including failing to comply with aircrew instructions, assault aircrew, obstruct police and cause harm to a commonwealth officer,” an AFP spokesperson told Fairfax Media. “Enquiries into this matter are continuing.”

“This arrest is a timely reminder for the public to remember that when travelling on an aircraft within Australia, you are bound by Australian laws. Unacceptable or violent behaviour will not be tolerated.”

The flight was subsequently delayed by three hours, landing in Brisbane at 8.30 am local time.

Tell us in the comments below, have you ever witnessed unruly passenger behaviour?

Image credit: WAtoday.