Knee Jerk Reaction

Recently, there was a whole lot of drama in the world of air travel. So much so, that a plane was literally diverted to the closest airport as if a terrorist plot was in action and there was a high stakes battle to save human life from a catastrophe of epic proportion. What was the terrifying offense that caused this dramatic action by the pilots? You guessed it, one more passenger got tired of their travel companion’s inconsideration for their comfort by trying to make their own flight remotely comfortable.

KneeDefenderA fight between two passengers started on a United Airlines flight recently when one passenger was using the Knee Defender, a $21.95 gadget that attaches to a passenger’s tray table and prevents the person in front of them from reclining their seat.

The dispute on United Flight 1462 from Newark, New Jersey to Denver escalated to a point where the airline decided to divert to Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, according to Transportation Security Administration spokesman Ross Feinstein.

Chicago Police and TSA officers met the flight, spoke to the passengers and “deemed it a customer service issue,” Feinstein said. The plane then continued to Denver without them, arriving 1 hour and 38 minutes late, according to the airline’s website.

The altercation escalated when a flight attendant asked the man to remove the device and he refused. The woman, who was trying to recline, stood up, turned around and threw a cup of water at him. That’s when United decided to land in Chicago. The two passengers were not allowed to continue to Denver.

Both passengers were sitting in United’s Economy Plus section, which has only four inches of legroom, compared to the plane’s Business-Class or First-Class accommodations.

Sentiments among frequent travelers may be split between who was right and who was wr ong in this case, but there is one thing all agree on. The coach flights on all carriers severely lack the the comfort of their first-class and business-classes on all airlines.