I want to clarify one point up front for this blog. I am claustiphobic!! If I weren’t, I would be after learning that American Airlines will literally not let you off the plane! A reasonable person would expect that if a plane has been grounded for bad weather, then the customer can decide that they just don’t want to be on that plane.
American Airlines representatives have said in the past that security is the issue. If this is the case, then at what point does it become unlawful to hold a passenger without just cause. This has become more and more of a problem for passengers as airways become more crowded and flights are delayed for longer periods of time.
A particular flight which included Catherine Ray of Fayetteville was diverted because of a storm over north Texas. She and others were held on the plane for more than eight hours. A lawsuit has now ensued against American Airlines, naming among the charges: false imprisonment, fraud and negligence.
American Airlines responded with changes in their policy which permits passengers to leave after FOUR hours if safety permits. Wow, surely we have laws about someone being held against one’s will. These rules were enacted to protect the passengers of U.S. airlines against hijackers and being taken hostage. Cases like the above example give a whole new meaning to who is being held hostage!