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US Airliner Turns Back in Mid-flight Due to Passenger Defying Mask Rule

US Airliner Turns Back in Mid-flight Due to Passenger Defying Mask Rule

Friday, 21 January, 2022 - 07:00
Delta Airlines passenger planes are seen on the tarmac of John F. Kennedy International Airpot in New York. (Yuki Iwamura / AFP)

An American Airlines jetliner headed from Miami to London turned around in mid-flight Thursday because a passenger refused to wear a Covid mask, the airline said.


"American Airlines flight 38 with service from Miami to London returned to MIA due to a disruptive customer refusing to comply with the federal mask requirement," the airline said.


Police were waiting when the Boeing 777 carrying 129 passengers and a crew of 14 landed back in Miami.


When the plane landed police escorted that passenger off the plane without incident, a police official told CNN.


American Airlines said that pending further investigation this passenger has been placed on a list of people barred from flying with the airline.


The Federal Aviation Administration said in January 2021 it would observe a zero tolerance policy toward people who reject federal rules mandating mask-wearing on US domestic flights.


This came as flight attendants reported a high number of incidents of verbal and physical abuse from travelers who refuse to wear a mask.


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