Jessica Cabot was born blind, but she’d been on two flights by herself before boarding a United Airlines flight last month, so she figured she knew what to expect. On all three flights, she was told by the flight attendants to remain seated until everyone else was off the plane, and then someone would help her off. That worked the first two times at any rate.
She said she heard the other passengers leave and then the unmistakable sound of the aircraft door being sealed shut.
“And then, just complete silence. And I started calling out with no response.”
That’s when she realized she was alone, she said. She had no idea how to open the plane’s door or whether that would be a safe thing to do.
She said she was stuck for 10 minutes, uncertain what to do, but was found by a maintenance crew that happened to enter the aircraft.
United offered her a $250 travel voucher and told the CBC that they’ve taken steps to ensure this doesn’t happen again. I hope that includes a sign on the plane that reads REMEMBER TO CHECK THE PLANE BEFORE LOCKING IT.
“Blind woman abandoned on airplane” [Yahoo! News] (Thanks to William!)