Okay so just… think about the thing that might be one of your scariest things you think about. Does it involve being locked in a not terribly large space and it’s dark and no one else is there and oh my goodness gracious I’m scared? Take that nightmare and turn it into the reality for a passenger on a recent flight. He fell asleep during a layover and woke up locked inside a dark plane, all by himself.*
The traveler was making his way from Louisiana on a trip to visit family on a United Express flight and had a stop in Houston, reports KRTK.com.
“I was coming from Louisiana to see my sister in California. We had a layover in Texas,” the man explained. “I just took my hat off and I took a nap.”
Because you cannot take a nap in a hat, ladies and gentlemen. As all who have tried surely know. Anyway, he took to snoozing and the next thing he knew, he was down the sleep rabbit hole.
“I woke up and the lights were out. I was like, what’s going on? I thought maybe it was a layover, still on the same plane.”
But no — instead he realized he was all by his lonesome, tucked into a window seat near the back of the plane. Somehow no one had noticed his little hideaway and the plane had been turned in for the night.
He thought he was dreaming. It was cold and it was dark in the cabin, but at least his cell phone worked. What did the pioneers do without such technology? Although it’s a lot harder to get locked in a covered wagon, but you get the point.
“I called my girlfriend, and she thought I was crazy. I said, ‘Debbie I’m locked on the plane.’ I said, ‘I’m telling you the truth; you better go somewhere and get me off this plane.’”
She realized he wasn’t being a jokester and called the airline. More than half an hour later, the report says, workers hopped on the plane and rescued the marooned adventurer. It sounds like fingers got pointed right away, so far as who was at fault for this solo sojourn.
“I said, ‘Don’t put the blame on me. I didn’t do anything wrong here,’” he says. “And then they were, like, try to hush-hush, keep it quiet. And they gave me this little package here in a motel room.”
The man says it’s odd how no one thought to wake him up in Houston, not a staff member, not a passenger, nobody.
“They didn’t sweep the plane,” he said. “I mean, who shut the door?”
ExpressJet issued this statement: “An ExpressJet passenger remained on board flight 4245, operating as United Express from Lafayette, La. to Houston on Friday, Dec. 6, after all passengers had deplaned. ExpressJet is investigating to determine how this occurred. We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience this caused for the passenger.”
Although the company said a post-flight walk-through happened on that flight, there was no explanation as to how such a thing could’ve missed a large object like a sleeping human being who is not wearing an invisibility cloak or have any other weird, hide-y advantages.
When all was said and done, the man says he was given a voucher and a flight to get to his destination in California as well as a hotel room, after he missed his connection due to the Rip Van Winkle episode. But he still seems crunchy about how everything went down. Understandably so, perhaps?
“What if I had a medical condition or something? What if I had a heart attack and I was dead? You just shut the plane and leave someone on there? It’s the way I look at it,” he said.
Know that this story was only posted because of my loyalty to our readers. Because the whole thing makes me want to jump outside my self and run from all the nearest confined spaces. So, there’s that.