Travelers speak out after Delta flight to NYC diverts to Atlanta due to passenger with lighter

CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga. — A Delta flight traveling from Dallas to New York was diverted to Atlanta Thursday after a passenger was found with a lighter on the plane.

Delta officials said the incident happened on Delta Flight 420 from Dallas/Fort Worth at 12:15 p.m. It was supposed to land in New York at 4:30 p.m.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation clarified one passenger had a lighter on the plane.

That person was removed from the plane and taken to the hospital for evaluation.

“You wonder how they got through TSA,” said Dough Puza, a traveler.

An emergency was declared to help air traffic control get the aircraft in safely.

“A lighter is a very dangerous thing. I’m glad they at least addressed it. People just don’t realize flames and airplanes don’t get along,” said Puza.

“That’s what the airlines should do. And passengers should understand things are going to come up and planes are going to get diverted. Just be on your best behavior and great manners,” said Kat Puza.

The plane landed in Atlanta around 3:30 p.m. and resumed its flight to JFK Thursday afternoon.

There were 92 passengers and five crew members on the plane.

The airline thanked passengers onboard for understanding and apologized for the delay.

Delta airline issued the following statement Thursday afternoon:

“Delta has zero tolerance for unruly behavior and will work with law enforcement authorities to that end. We appreciate the civility and understanding of the remainder of our Dallas to New York customers and apologize for the delay in their travels.”

Delta did not identify the person who had the lighter or say what charges that person might be facing. The FBI is investigating.





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