American Airlines confirmed the incident and also stated that the woman assaulted a crew member.
A video of a woman being duct-taped to an airplane seat was captured by TikTok user @lol.ariee. The video, which is now unavailable, showed a gray-haired woman with silver duct tape over her mouth. Her arms and body also seemed taped to the seat on a flight. The incident took place on board a flight from Dallas Fort Worth, Texas to Charlotte, North Carolina earlier this week. The two-hour July 6 flight had been delayed for at least three hours before it finally departed at midnight. But one hour in, chaos took place on the flight as the woman allegedly assaulted a crew member and tried to open the flight door mid-air.
Woman on American Airlines plane duct-taped to her seat after she tried to open the door mid-flight pic.twitter.com/0PS17aZVSY— Naija (@Naija_PR) July 12, 2021
American Airlines confirmed to the New York Post that flight attendants had ‘restrained’ the passenger until the flight safely reached its destination. Describing the events, @lol.ariee said in the videos "we see all flight attendants running up and down the aisles, frantically kind of like whispering to each other.” The plane’s attendants began locking bathrooms, grabbing bags from overhead bins, and wouldn’t say what was happening, @lol.ariee said. “It was just kind of like chaos and no one knows what’s going on,” she continued. The pilot had also asked passengers to remain in their seats. “Then we’re gradually starting to hear more and more screaming, and we’re like, ‘Wait a minute,'” she pointed out.
This is misleading, allowing people to believe duct tape is an acceptable restraint for the situation.— Cher Scarlett (@cherthedev) July 12, 2021
It is impossible to open the plane door while in the air. She was restrained for biting a flight attendant. @AmericanAir should have humane restraint equipment on board. https://t.co/9rgoRNxmzb
Just before landing, a crew member explained that a woman, with an apparent mental health issue, “had an outburst and like, had the urge to get off the plane. And she was saying, ‘I need to get off this plane,’ and she went up to the exits and started banging on the doors, saying, ‘You need to let me off this plane!' I guess it took all five flight attendants to subdue her and like literally take her down so,” she said. “They pretty much took her down, put her in the seat and duct taped her.” After the plane landed with no further incident, passengers walked by the woman still taped to her seat. As the TikTok user exited the plane, she noticed paramedics who were standing by with a stretcher. The video has received tons of reactions. While some people feel that duct-taping the woman was a harsh decision, others argued that the crew did the best they could to handle the situation.
Being someone who is afraid of flying, the TikTok user is off base; they handled this to the best of their abilities. Flight attendants are not crisis counselors and someone trying to open a door mid-flight absolutely MUST be physically restrained. https://t.co/0HpzMl1tbv— fka section331 (@KneesToLetters) July 11, 2021
The incident was first reported by TMZ. A rep for the airlines said, "While in flight from Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW) to Charlotte (CLT) on July 6, the crew on board American Airlines flight 1774 reported a potential security concern after a customer attempted to open the forward boarding door and physically assaulted, bit and caused injury to a flight attendant." They added, "For the safety and security of other customers and our crew, the individual was restrained until the flight landed at CLT and could be met by law enforcement and emergency personnel." The woman has been placed on American’s “internal” no-fly list pending an investigation. She was later taken to a hospital for an evaluation.