Woman passenger fakes illness to get bigger seat on plane, but her plan backfired

A woman who pretended to have health issues during a flight in order to get a bigger seat caused forced the pilot to make an emergency diversion.

The unnamed woman passenger was was flying from Pensacola in Florida to Miami on American Eagle flight 3508 when she claimed to have trouble breathing.

However, the plan quickly backfired, as the pilot took the decision to declare an inflight emergency and turn the flight back around to land at Pensacola.

The entire aircraft had to evacuate after the woman refused to get off, but eventually authorities convinced her to deplane.

She later admitted she had made up the medical problem to get a bigger seat.

“On Friday 29 November, American Eagle flight 3508 returned to Pensacola due to a passenger who requested medical assistance,” American Airlines said in a statement.

“The flight took off at 5.43am and landed back at Pensacola at 6.26am and taxied to the gate. All passengers deplaned normally at the gate through the main boarding door and onto the jet bridge.

“The passenger was subsequently removed by law enforcement and medical personnel, and the flight took off again at 7.41am.”

The woman passenger is currently being held in custody under Florida’s Baker Act, which allows people with mental illnesses to be held involuntarily for up to 72 hours if it’s believed they’re at risk of suffering from neglect or of harming themselves or others.

No charges have yet been filed.