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Weekly Weird: Sleeping Pilots, Smoker or Terrorist, and a Spear Gun

Things got weird in the skies this week. While pilots napped, passengers policed each other; and even more strange stuff happened on the ground. Read on for our round-up of the most bizarre travel stories of the week.

  • survey of British Airline Pilots Association members revealed that 43 percent of pilots have fallen asleep on the flight deck. And yet, that’s not the worst thing we’ve read this week about pilots in the cockpit.
  • We’ve all forgotten about a pair of tweezers in our carry-ons, but a spear gun? A passenger flying from Newark to Antigua (for some fishing, we imagine) tried to bring aboard a 21-inch spear gun and a utility knife in a carry-on bag. When questioned, the passenger claimed not to know that the spear gun was a forbidden item.
  • Ever get the feeling that TSA screener patting you down isn’t the most competent? Maybe they bribed their way into the position! A TSA screener at Philadelphia International Airport was accused of accepting a $200 bribe in exchange for making sure a security officer passed the annual certification exam. So, does this mean sending a $20 bill through the X-ray machine will get you out of a body scan?
  • In this age of shoe bombers, we’re pretty sure lighting anything on a plane is a terrible idea … especially while shouting about Osama bin Laden. Yazeed Mohammed-Abunayyan must have really needed his nicotine fix—he tried to light an electronic cigarette shortly after takeoff on his flight from Portland to Houston. Instead of hiding in the bathroom and trying to sneak a smoke, Yazeed allegedly tried to punch a flight attendant who asked him to put out his e-cigarette, sang loudly about Osama bin Laden, professed his hatred of women, and screamed about Allah. Other passengers helped restrain Yazeed, and the flight returned to Portland, where we imagine he had to wait quite awhile to get his next cigarette.
  • One drink for you, one drink for me! A Pinnacle Airlines flight attendant may have been dipping into the beverage cart on a flight. The flight attendant was reportedly taken off a Delta connecting flight at Grand Forks International Airport after a nurse practitioner told the pilots she appeared drunk. The flight attendant, who was the only one working the flight, failed several sobriety tests; three empty travel size bottles of Skyy Vodka were found in a search of the plane.

Did you see anything weird during your travels this week? Leave a comment below!

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