May 26, 2022

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United Airlines passenger jumps out of a Boeing 737

United Airlines passenger jumps out of a Boeing 737

Photo of the article titled United Airlines Passenger jumps out of a Boeing 737 taxi in Chicago

picture: Daniel Selim / Agence France-Presse (Getty Images)

No matter how long the flight actually takes, it feels like the time between landing and being able to get off the plane to the longest part of any flight. I usually remind myself constantly that it will only take a few minutes for me to be at the station. However, I never thought the wait was long enough to consider jumping out of the plane and running across the tarmac to the terminal.

At 4:30 a.m. Thursday, United Airlines Flight 2478 landed at Chicago’s O’Hare Airport after departing from San Diego, California. When a Boeing 737-900ER approached its gate, Randy Frank Davila decided, for some strange reason, that Open the emergency exit door. The passenger then climbed into the wing of the plane and descended into O’Hare Square. Ground crew arrested the 57-year-old Californian and also contacted local law enforcement.

A statement from United Airlines did not address the widely reported chain of events:

This morning, United Flight 2478 was heading toward the gate in Chicago O’Hare when a passenger opened the plane’s door and exited the plane. Our ground crew stopped the person off the plane, and the person is now with law enforcement. Then the plane arrived at the gate and all the passengers disembarked safely. The safety of our customers and crew is our top priority.”

His fellow passengers and even the 911 dispatcher were stunned by what happened. I just want to know what this guy was like when he opened that door. Did he think he could walk across the runway, to the terminal building and leave the airport? Did he only have carry-on luggage, or was he planning to pick up luggage from the carousel? Well, now he has to plan to appear in court at the end of June.

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