Hawaiian Airlines flight diverted after passenger became furious when crew asked him to pay £8 for a blanket

James Rothwell
Aerial view of the northern shore of Hawaii 

A Hawaiian Airlines jet was diverted from Honolulu to Los Angeles after a passenger became outraged when he was asked to pay £8 for a blanket.

The passenger, who asked for the blanket as he was feeling cold, is said to have become furious after being told it would cost $10 (£8).

According to US police, the 66-year-old then said he would like to "take someone behind the woodshed for this" - prompting airline staff to divert the flight because they felt threatened.

When the plane arrived at LAX airport in Los Angeles, airline staff reportedly said the diversion was due to "operational reasons" and that police were about to board the plane. 

The passenger eventually took a different plane to Hawaii

Two airport police officers then escorted the passenger off the plane, but did not use handcuffs. He has not been named. 

A Los Angeles police spokesman said the man voluntarily left the flight and that no crime had been committed during the incident, which took place on Wednesday.

 “It was just a complaint about a blanket, about the cost of the blanket," the spokesman said. “He was upset about the charge for the blanket and asked for a corporate phone number.

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"They provided him with it and he said, ‘I’d really like to take somebody behind the woodshed over this.’ They diverted the aircraft because of that statement.”

A spokesman for Hawaiian Airlines defended the move, insisting that the passenger was "unruly." "The decision to divert is based on safety," he said. “We had an unruly passenger on board, so the pilot elected to divert to LAX.”

This year several airlines announced plans to step up their crews' training on how to defend themselves against unruly passengers. 

Russia's Pobeda Airlines reportedly hopes to teach its staff judo and sambo, a martial art developed in the 1920s by the Soviets. 

Korean Air have also taken a tougher stance, issuing their workers with stun guns to manage in-flight disturbances. 

Hawaiian Airlines said passengers are allowed to keep the blanket. 

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