No, My Drunk Seatmate Probably Can't Open The Emergency Exit

Patrick wanted off the plane. The overloaded Delta flight sat on the runway for more than an hour. He had the privilege of sitting in the exit row next to a very drunk man who was probably more likely to collapse on the emergency exit door than to be capable of opening it. When te flight attendant wouldn’t pay attention, he tried to contact Delta customer service and PR via e-mail for help. Some kind of help. When the flight attendants finally let a few people off the plane so it could take off, Patrick wasn’t one of the lucky few. Neither was Drunky McSeatmate.

This isn’t the most obnoxious tale of air travel woe we’ve ever heard, but it does sound annoying and dangerous.

When on a flight from [readacted] to [redacted] August 8, a very drunk man sat beside
me in the exit row and Delta didn’t give a damn.

So much for safety first.

I alerted the sole flight attendant who couldn’t have cared less that
the man was drunk and unable to perform the duties required by Delta,
the FAA, and any sane passenger.

The flight was oversold. There was weight issues.

The FA didn’t give a damn that the passenger was drunk, pushing into
me, and violating several FAA regulations that would make him an
textbook candidate for removal. Instead, we were there over an hour
stewing in Delta’s problems: over weight and oversold and an
intoxicated man in the exit row.

Since the FA didn’t care I emailed Delta from my phone.

I then emailed a spokeswoman ([redacted]).

I explained in emails that the FA had several points of failure yet he
chose to ignore the problems. I explained how the FA defered to the
Customer Associate from the gate who boarded the plane.

The CA was not made aware of my complaints. The CA selected passengers
to leave the plane.

I wanted to leave rather than sit next to a very drunk man who reeked
like a tavern floor.

Instead, the CA quickly selected a worried mother, infant, and father.
I wanted to leave. I couldn’t.

I wondered what gives? Why does Delta have no reply? Where does the FA
get off?

An annoying seatmate all up in your personal space is one thing: an intoxicated person in the exit row is another. Patrick didn’t tell us what these e-mails said, though. Was he complaining? Did he demand to be let off the plane? A customer with a specific demand is easier to deal with than a customer sending multiple free-form rants with no suggested resolution. Depending on the time zone where the airport is located and the time of your flight, someone is not always standing by waiting to answer your e-mail.