18-hour flight delay at JFK leaves passengers irate

Hundreds of travelers were left tired and outraged on Wednesday after waiting eighteen hours at John F. Kennedy Airport for their flight to take them to Los Angeles.

Delta Flight 975 was supposed to take off at 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon, but was initially delayed due to a mechanical issue. The hour quickly turned into two, then three, then four and even more as delay after delay kept the passengers stuck on the ground. 

Passengers on the flight reported that there was no communication from the flight deck or the flight attendants, and that they twice were forced to leave the aircraft and re-board. 

“Usually when something goes this wrong, it’s not just the result of one problem, but the confluence of several problems,” said Seth Kaplan, an airline expert. 

According to Kaplan, the lack of communication from the airline can be justified as it is not part of the airline standard. Speaking to FOX 5 NY, a commercial airline pilot said that giving passengers updates on takeoff time is a “nonessential” when it comes to FAA regulations. 

This latest incident comes less than a week after a fight broke out onboard another Delta flight to Miami that had passengers sitting on the tarmac for eight hours. 

As for Flight 975, Delta Airlines issued a statement defending their decision and apologizing, saying in part: “Customers were offered water and snacks, pillows and blankets in the terminal before the flight department at approximately 10 a.m. for Los Angeles Thursday morning.”

The flight landed at LAX at some point late Thursday afternoon.