United Flight Forced to Turn Around After Toilets 'Reached Capacity'


Airplane toilets, wont to quirks and mishaps as they are, can get too full. And when aircraft toilets reach capacity, vacation plans get thrown into chaos, as passengers onboard a flight from Denver to Kilauea, Hawaii learned all too well on Sunday. 

United Flight 1219 was three hours away from its destination of Lihue Airport, ostensibly gliding through the open air en route to paradise, when flight crew noticed the toilets had "reached capacity." The aircraft pulled a 180, darting back to San Francisco so the beleaguered waste tanks could be serviced. As you could guess, passengers were pissed: 

"Bottom line is they ruined a lot of people’s vacations yesterday,” Rich Anderson told FOX 31. “They gave us a really crummy start.”

United sent a statement to all the passengers, who were expecting to land safely in the blissful sunshine of Hawaii but instead arrived where they started, all because of the human detritus occupying the same plane. 

“A decision was made to turn back and land in San Francisco where arrangements were made to change planes. I can appreciate that this experience was disappointing and unpleasant," the statement read. 

To compensate for the dilemma, which set travelers back an additional eight hours, United provided $200 flight vouchers and 10,000 bonus miles for each passenger. 

United's negligence in cleaning out the plane's waste tanks fits what seems to be a growing trend of unexpected run-ins with fecal matter in the airline industry. (You read that sentence correctly). Late last year, a plane with broken toilets made an emergency landing so passengers could release their bowels without the threat of a toilet geyser destroying the cabin. And well, another plane diverted from its flightpath due to a passenger smearing poop on the lavatory walls. 

That being said, it's never too late to book a cheap, winter getaway

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Sam Blum is a News Staff Writer for Thrillist. He's also a martial arts and music nerd who appreciates a fine sandwich and cute dogs. Find his clips in The Guardian, Rolling Stone, The A.V. Club and Esquire. He's on Twitter @Blumnessmonster