Another flight was diverted because of a legroom brawl
In a continuing fit of "coach rage", yet another plane was diverted because of a mid-air legroom dispute less than a week after an international flight was diverted over the same issue.
The incident occurred on Wednesday night aboard an American Airlines flight from Miami to Paris, when 61-year-old Edmond Alexander allegedly confronted the passenger in front of him after the reclined seat entered Alexander's leg space.
A law enforcement official told ABC air marshals on board had to restrain the man after he retaliated against a flight attendant attempting to keep the peace.
"We are tasked with protecting the flight deck, the flight crew, the passengers and then ourselves", air marshal instructor Randy Parks told ABC.
The flight was subsequently diverted to Boston, where the aggressive passenger was arrested on arrival. He was then taken to a hospital for assistance with an unrelated health condition, and was arraigned at his hospital bed today.
Though widely prohibited by a number of US airlines, sales of the “knee defender” have surged this week since a Newark-to-Denver United Airlines flight was diverted because of an argument over one passenger's use of the anti-seat reclining device.
As airlines pack more seats into cabins to maximize revenue, room comes at an increasing premium, and it appears the seat-reclining war is far from over as passengers employ all sorts of tools to secure every last inch of in-flight territory -- even at the risk of being kicked off the plane.
Chloe Pantazi is an editorial assistant on Thrillist's travel team. She doesn't understand why people that want extra legroom don't just buy seats next to the emergency exit. Follow her to four more inches of foot space on Twitter at @ChloePantazi.