From newyorkdailynews.com:A blind man said he and his service dog were kicked off a plane at Philadelphia International Airport on Wednesday, after he couldn’t keep the pooch still.
But the flight was canceled after several other passengers argued the move was too severe.
The wild ordeal unfolded after Albert Rizzi and his dog, Doxy, boarded a U.S. Airways flight bound for MacArthur Airport in Long Island.
Passengers told WABC-TV that the flight attendant would not allow the plane to take off about 8 p.m. untilthe Golden Lab curled up under the seat.
But the guide dog grew more restless as the plane waited on the tarmac more than an hour — and a woman sitting next to Rizzi even offered her seat to allow the pooch more room.
“You’ve got about a minute to get this straightened out,” the flight attendant told Rizzi, according to a passenger on the plane.
“He tried to do whatever he could, and she went back to the front of the plane,” the passenger told the news station.
Suddenly, the pilot announced that the plane would be turning back to the gate, where the flight attendant escorted Rizzi off the aircraft.
“The lady comes back and gets very insistent,” Rizzi, of Bellport, N.Y., told the news station. “And I said, ‘Look, I don’t understand what you want me to do. ... He’s as best as he can, where he needs to be.’”
He said he didn’t realize right away that he was getting kicked off the flight.
“I hear nobody else moving, and as I’m walking to the front, I’m like, ‘Wait a second, why am I the only one getting off?’” he recalled.
But that’s when others aboard the plane tried to intervene.“We all kind of raised our voices and said this is a real problem,” the passenger said. “So the captain winds up coming out of the cockpit, and he basically asked us all to leave the aircraft.”
Officials with the airline told NBC Philadelphia that Rizzi became verbally abusive and couldn’t control his dog, which they maintain was wandering down the aisle.
But passengers said the flight attendant was unwilling to compromise with Rizzi.
Rizzi and several others took a bus home.Airline officials said they weren’t offering any refunds as the incident was still under investigation.
Check out the TABI resource web page at http://acorange.home.comcast.net/TABI and please make suggestions for new material. if you'd like to unsubscribe you can do so through the freelists.org web interface, or by sending an email to the address tabi-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx with the word "unsubscribe" in the subject.