Air Canada is reviewing how its staff left a sleeping woman strapped in her seat as they parked and left a plane
Imagine this: You wake up after a long flight, except instead of seeing the person next to you and a smiling flight attendant in the aisle, it’s silent and pitch dark. No one else is on the plane. It’s hours after you were scheduled to land, and you slowly realize that everyone, including the flight crew, has disembarked, leaving you alone, strapped to your seat, cold, in the dark. It’s a nightmare-inducing scenario, and it’s exactly what happened to Tiffani Adams on an Air Canada flight from Quebec City to Toronto earlier this month.
In a Facebook post that was shared to Air Canada’s page, Adams recounted waking up alone and having to find a way out of the plane by herself.
Her phone was dead, so she couldn’t call for help. She felt her way to the plane’s cockpit, where she found that without power turned on, the radios didn’t work. She found a flashlight and shined SOS signals through the plane’s windows, but no one saw them. Finally, Adams figured out how to unbolt the three locks on the cabin door, but once she got it opened, she faced a 40-foot drop to the tarmac below. Eventually, with her legs hanging out the cabin door, she was able to flag down a ground control crew, who helped her down.
“It’s just a sheer sense of helplessness when you feel like you’re locked on this aircraft,” Adams told CTV News. “I thought, ‘This is a nightmare. This is not happening.'”
Air Canada has confirmed that this happened and said they’re reviewing exactly how the entire crew of the plane parked it and headed home for the night without realizing they had left a sleeping passenger onboard. Adams said airline representatives reached out to her personally, apologized, offered a limo and a hotel, and drove her to her car so she could go home after this all happened.
“We are still reviewing this matter so we have no additional details to share, but we have followed up with the customer and remain in contact with her,” the airline told the Associated Press.
Meanwhile, Adams says she’s still dealing with the aftereffects of what must have been a truly terrifying incident. She said in her Facebook post that she has night terrors that have resulted in her having trouble sleeping, and no wonder. It’s mind-boggling that an airline could make a mistake this huge, and this is definitely something no passenger should ever go through.
However upsetting Adams’ story, don’t let this awful incident scare you away from your next vacay, though. While this isn’t the first time a sleeping passenger has been accidentally left behind on a plane, it’s fortunately an extremely rare occurrence. Some things to be more worried about when you fly: Intense, dangerous turbulence, and the rampant sexism that flight attendants face as part of their jobs.