Flight Attendants Who Duct-Taped Passenger to Seat in Shocking Video Receive Praise from Internet: 'These Are Model Employees'
The passenger, identified as 22-year-old Max Berry, was duct-taped to his seat by flight attendants after going on a violent tirade on a Frontier Airlines flight.
A viral video of a Frontier Airlines flight has had viewers in shock and horror after a passenger reportedly inappropriately touched two flight attendants, screamed that his parents were worth “two million g*d*mn dollars,” shouted more expletives and punched another flight attendant.
The passenger, identified as 22-year-old Max Berry, was then duct-taped to his seat by flight attendants in an effort to humanely restrain him.
He was charged with three counts of battery and booked at Miami-Dade County Jail once the plane landed.
Frontier passenger allegedly touched 2 flight attendants breasts, then screamed his parents are worth $2 million, before punching a flight attendant. Frontier suspended the crew for duct taping the passenger to his seat as they landed in Miami. 22 yr old Max Berry is in custody. pic.twitter.com/4xS9Rwvafx— Sam Sweeney (@SweeneyABC) August 3, 2021
Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, released a statement following the incident that stated the crew had been suspended as a “knee-jerk” reaction by Frontier Airlines.
“The crew was forced to restrain the passenger with the tools available on board,” she wrote. “Management should be supporting the crew at this time not suspending them.”
If this is not immediately corrected @FlyFrontier, Flight Attendants may feel unsafe to come to work. Management has a legal duty to maintain a safe work environment for employees. #OurSafetyYourDuty https://t.co/NChl8gWmV1 pic.twitter.com/BW2lyWGfJg— Sara Nelson (@FlyingWithSara) August 3, 2021
Frontier Airlines itself released a statement verifying the crew’s suspension.
Where is the line?@FlyFrontier relieved flight attendants after they restrained an unruly and physically abusive passenger.— errol barnett (@errolbarnett) August 3, 2021
Airline says suspension is “required in such circumstances” but Flight Attendant Union Pres. @FlyingWithSara says this is what makes FA’s feel unsafe. https://t.co/eNgITU8JaS pic.twitter.com/giyhMxJ8si
"During a flight from Philadelphia to Miami on July 31, a passenger made inappropriate physical contact with a flight attendant and subsequently physically assaulted another flight attendant. As a result, the passenger needed to be restrained until the flight landed in Miami and law enforcement arrived,” the statement reads. “The flight attendants will be, as required in such circumstances, relieved of flying pending completion of investigation of the events."
The video, which was posted on ABC's Sam Sweeny's Twitter account, has since been viewed more than 11.2 million times. When Twitter users discovered the crew had reportedly been suspended, it caused an uproar.
Many railed against Frontier Airlines, hailing the flight attendants as “heroes” and calling for just treatment of the crew.
Dear Frontier, was the Air Marshalls on board, was there any police officers, was there any security at all— Badd Company (@BaddCompani) August 3, 2021
This passenger was a danger to Everyone on that fight.
If duct tape is all you have then Frontier, that's on You. We deserve to be safe on Any Flight.
Why in the world was the crew suspended? Their main role is passenger safety which they achieved by restraining this out of control sex offender. I know from other flight attendants here that duct tape is considered the acceptable way to subdue violent passengers.— Amy (@AmyNoMiddleNam3) August 3, 2021
All Heroes don’t wear capes. They Duct Tape MFs to keep the passengers safe! https://t.co/4USzvzAT6B— NBG | BigCheeseKIT (@BigCheeseKIT) August 3, 2021
Exactly. Zip ties or duct tape. If i was a passenger on that flight, I don’t care what they used to keep that asshole in his seat. You cannot punch a flight attendant & endanger the lives of everyone onboard while cruising at 30,000 ft above the ground. NO exceptions.— Regan (@regandarcy) August 3, 2021
Also observe how they used the minimum amount of duct tape required, this saving the company from having to invest in more duct tape to needlessly add to load weight.They have prioritised both passenger safety and shareholder profits. These are model employees. Give promotion.— Shiv Ramdas (@nameshiv) August 3, 2021
It's either duct tape or knock him out. I think they took the humane way and protected the rest of the passengers who weren't causing any disturbance.— Susan Kramer (@kramer_susan) August 3, 2021
It makes me more nervous that the flight crew was suspended for using the said duct tape to try to keep the passengers and flight safe.— Laura Ward (@hipknitter) August 3, 2021
“These are model employees,” Twitter user Shiv Ramdas wrote. “Give promotion.”
“It makes me more nervous that the flight crew was suspended for using the said duct tape to try to keep the passengers and flight safe,” Laura Ward wrote.
Following the backlash, Frontier released a statement in support of the crew to CBS News, explaining that the employees would be put on paid leave, as is protocol pending an investigation.
“Frontier Airlines maintains the utmost value, respect, concern and support for all of our flight attendants, including those who were assaulted on this flight,” Frontier Airlines spokesperson Jennifer de la Cruz said in a statement. “We are supporting the needs of these team members and are working with law enforcement to fully support the prosecution of the passenger involved. The inflight crew members’ current paid leave status is in line with an event of this nature pending an investigation.”
Frontier, a well-known budget airline, saw a revenue loss off a whopping $225 million in 2020 amid the pandemic.
The airline debuted at $19 per share in April of this year, giving it a valuation of $4 billion.