A nightmare for JetBlue passengers at JFK
(New York - WABC, February 14, 2007) (WABC) -- At JFK Airport, at least four JetBlue planes were stuck on the runway fully loaded with passengers and children for hours.
The planes were running out of food and water -- and the passengers were running out of patience.
Eyewitness News reporter Phil Lipoff is at JFK with the story.
It was a nasty commute for a lot of people Wednesday morning so we'll keep this in perspective. But think about it -- hours and hours on a plane.
We have pictures from inside JetBlue Flight 751 on its way to Cancun. One hundred and 34 passengers sat on the plane for more than nine hours today. Passengers didn't get off until 5 p.m. And as you would imagine, all that time never getting to Cancun had passengers furious.
"There was no power and it was hot. There was no air. They kept having to open the actual plane doors so we could breath," a passenger on the flight told us.
"Nobody gave us any answers. They kept telling us we know as much as you do. And I said, I don't work here, you work here, give me answers," another passenger said.
"Everybody is incredibly tired and frustrated and we didn't expect to be in New York tonight, so it's ridiculous. Just sitting there and sitting there and them saying they were going to pull us into the gate and they never did. There was very little food. It was just a nightmare," a passenger told us.
JetBlue told these folks that they were getting off their plane that they will get reimbursed for this ticket, and also get a free round trip ticket anywhere JetBlue flies.
A JetBlue spokesperson said, "We did not do our best ... no excuse for why we allowed those passengers to sit on the tarmac." The spokesperson adds that a total of six aircraft were waiting for departure at JFK today and were eventually cancelled. They say the problem was that there were no free gates to bring the planes back to, that's why they had to rely on buses.
Airport officials say if JetBlue had told them that they had people needing rescuing on planes out on the tarmac, they would have sent buses. They said JetBlue didn't call the airport to tell them that until after 3 p.m.
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