JetBlue Pledges to Review Safety Procedures After Pilot's Midair Meltdown
QUEENS — JetBlue will review its safety procedures after a pilot's midair meltdown forced a plane from New York to make an emergency landing in Texas Tuesday morning.
JetBlue CEO Dave Barger — who has known pilot Clayton Osbon for years and described him as a "consummate professional" — said on NBC's "Today" show Wednesday that the airline would check its protocols to see whether the frightening outburst could have been prevented.
Barger praised the crew and passengers on the New York to Las Vegas flight for intervening Tuesday morning when a panicked Osbon began shouting about a bomb and urging passengers to pray.
The pilot was reportedly suspended by the airline Wednesday.
"The captain's now in the hands of medical care, obviously, under the custody of the FBI," Barger said, according to reports. "I've known the captain personally for a long period of time and there's been no indication of this at all."
The co-pilot kicked Osbon out of the cockpit, and then an off-duty police officer and off-duty pilot subdued him until the plane could land in Amarillo, Texas.
"It was a true team effort at 35,000 feet yesterday," Barger said Wednesday.
Nearly two years ago, JetBlue flight attendant Steven Slater became famous for a different kind of meltdown.
After getting into an argument with a passenger on a plane that had recently landed at JFK, Slater gave a profanity-laced farewell over the public address system, then grabbed a beer, deployed the emergency slide and bolted.