American Airlines keeping alcohol service suspended after uptick in unruly fliers
American Airlines won’t be serving alcohol on its flights until at least the fall after “deeply disturbing” incidents on aircrafts during the pandemic, according to a report.
“Flight attendants are on the front lines every day not only ensuring our customers’ safety, but are also calming fears, answering questions, and enforcing policies like federally-required face masks,” an internal memo sent out on Saturday read, according to NBC News.
“Over the past week we’ve seen some of these stressors create deeply disturbing situations on board aircraft,” the company went on.
“Let me be clear: American Airlines will not tolerate assault or mistreatment of our crews.”
But the airline will reportedly still serve alcohol to business and first-class passengers.
The decision comes after an unruly passenger knocked out a Southwest Airlines flight attendant’s teeth after a dispute involving mask following a flight from Sacramento to San Diego — prompting the airline to ban the passenger.
Southwest said Friday it would not resume in-flight alcohol service, according to NBC.
Misbehaving passenger incidents are up in 2021 — mostly due to stubborn flyers who refused to wear masks, according to Federal Aviation Administration data. The agency receives no more than 150 complaints about unruly passengers during an average year, but has received 2,500 of them in 2021, including 1,900 involving passengers eschewing masks, according to NBC.