Abusive Passenger charged £85,000 for disruption

https://news.sky.com/story/jet2-com-orders-abusive-passenger-to-pay-85k-after-raf-jets-escort-plane-back-to-uk-11765183

Rather a silly article, really. Jet2 don’t have the power to ‘order’ anyone to pay them £85,000 and I strongly doubt whether they truly ‘vigorously’ pursue members of the underclass for similar sums either, beyond a few silly letters from some debt-chasing agency.

Things might not be so black and white.

Since smoking was banned on aeroplanes the air quality has actually decreased significantly.  Counterintuitive, but the absence of the formerly ubiquitous smelly smoke has enabled the airlines to cut costs by recirculating the cabin air much less.  (There’s an energy cost to bringing air into a pressurised cabin from outside, which translates to a financial cost as it ultimately increases the fuel consumption of the plane.)  Consequently there’s significantly less oxygen in the air and more CO2 than there would be if you were standing on a mountain at the ‘cabin altitude’.

If you draw a graph of just about any aspect of human behaviour, you get a bell-curve.  Most people sort of in the middle, a few at the extremes.  If you move a bell-curve just a little bit you get effectively no difference in the middle, but there can be a dramatic effect at the extremes.  (For example how a small change in the average temperature of the climate somewhere can bring about a sudden significant increase in the number of rare ‘extreme’ weather events.)

If you take a large group of people who are mildly hypoxic (everyone who flies on any given day, say), and make them slightly more hypoxic, it’ll have very little effect on the great majority.  But down at the extreme end of the curve of human behaviour, it’s quite likely to lead to a significant rise in the very small numbers of people completely losing their shit for no apparent reason.

From the point of view of an organisation (or a society) dealing with large numbers of people, it’s a mistake to allow the fact that individual dickheads are responsible for their own behaviour to blind you to the fact that quite small changes to the environment people are living in can have a very significant effect on the amount of dickhead behaviour you need to deal with.

Tangentially related to this, here’s a link that might interest you – about the remarkably strong correlation between lead in petrol and crime rates in the USA (and elsewhere): https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-27067615 1

I don’t know what the answer is to that, from an environmental point of view no doubt it’s a good thing that planes are burning less fuel than they otherwise might.  But then again, flying probably should be more expensive than it is regardless.  It’s about time aviation fuel was taxed, at least a little bit.  Maybe they should stop serving alcohol in airports, or at the very least stop serving Stella to dickheads for breakfast.

What do you think?

Written by James

One Comment

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  1. Was the “ordered” bit just added in by Sky to make it more sensational? What I expect they have done is sent her an invoice, then a letter before action, follow by a lawsuit. It will be very easy for them to show the cost to them in monetary terms, cause by her actions. Why should the airline be out of pocket because of her actions after all.

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