KLM flight en route to Calgary following detour back to Amsterdam due to unruly passenger
A KLM flight bound for Calgary was delayed Sunday morning when an unruly passenger forced the airline to return to Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam.
An aggressive passenger was handcuffed by the crew, according to an article by Doron Sajet in nhniews.nl.
The plane, a Boeing 777-200, was close to Iceland at the time, but turned around and returned to the airport in Amsterdam.
It's not yet clear who the passenger was targeting, but the man was overpowered and had to be handcuffed to his seat.
Dutch police met the flight at Schiphol Airport to retrieve the passenger.
The flight, KL0677, then departed Schiphol Airport at 7:07 p.m. Amsterdam time. It's now scheduled to arrive in Calgary at 7:54 p.m MT.
The flight delay impacted some people trying to fly out of Calgary.
Twenty-eight students from Calgary Academy were supposed to fly with KLM to Amsterdam to connect to Tanzania to help out a school there. That flight was cancelled, causing the students to miss their connection and reschedule to fly out Sunday night.
“So now everything is pushed back a day,” one student, Sophie Mook, said.
“It sucks. It’s sad because a lot of people paid for their trip themselves so, losing that chance and that opportunity to help other people, because of one person, it just shows how much it affects other people.”
John Gradek, the head of McGill University's aviation management program, called the actions taken by the flight crew in this case reasonable.
He told CTV News Calgary if a passenger is considered a threat or they are disrupting others on board, the crew can take action, typically starting with a warning but escalating to more serious action if their behaviour doesn’t change.
“If you’re a passenger on the airplane and you see this, it is not a pleasant sight to see, and you want to make sure the airline acts in the interest of passenger safety and crew safety, bringing this aircraft back on the ground,” Gradek said.
Gradek says KLM is not required to provide compensation to the passengers impacted because the situation was out of the airline’s control.
“It was a security issue and it really was something that the rules exempt the airline from compensation as a result of this incident,” he said.
“So, if KLM decides to do anything, it'll be because KLM feels that they’re being a good service provider and want to do something, but there's no obligation for them to do anything.”
CTV News has reached out to KLM and the Dutch police for details, but haven't yet heard back.
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