Chinese woman opens plane’s emergency exit for some fresh air, delaying flight

Zhuang Pinghui

A flight was delayed for an hour and a woman detained by police after she opened the emergency exit for “a breath of fresh air” before the flight took off in central China’s Hubei province on Monday, mainland media reported.

The incident happened on Xiamen Air flight MF8215 from Wuhan to Lanzhou, which was scheduled to take off at 3.45pm, Btime Video said.

Cabin crew had briefed the woman, who appeared to be in her 50s, about the rules when sitting next to the emergency exit and reminded her not to touch the button that opened the emergency exit.

However, the woman said she needed some fresh air and touched the button to open the exit when the stewardess turned around to help others, the report said.

=== PHOTO CAPTURED FROM WEIBO === A flight was delayed for an hour and a woman detained by police after she opened the emergency exit for Òa breath of fresh airÓ before the flight took off in central Hubei province on Monday. The incident happened on flight Xiamen Air MF8215, which was scheduled to take off in Wuhan at 15:45 after passengers boarded the plane for Lanzhou, Gansu province on the afternoon, reported the Btime Video. Air stewardess had briefed the woman, who looked to be in her 50s, about the rules of sitting next to the emergency exit and reminded her not to touch the button that could open the emergency exit. WEIBO

The woman was taken away and the flight was delayed for an hour.

Opening the emergency exit can be deemed to be disturbing public order in an aircraft, which is punishable by police detention and a fine.

In July last year, a woman who was flying for the first time mistook the emergency door for a lavatory door before her plane took off in Nanjing. The emergency slide was released and the flight was delayed for two hours. The woman was detained for 10 days.

Some passengers have paid a heavy price for releasing the emergency slide, which takes days and considerable expense to repair and reinstall. In January 2015, a man who opened an emergency door after a plane landed in Chongqing had to pay 35,000 yuan (about US$5,000) in compensation to the airline.

In June, a man from Hubei who was returning to China from Bangkok on a Thai Lion Air flight opened an emergency exit before take-off. After apologising repeatedly, according to witnesses, he was held by Thai authorities for one day and given a fine of 500 baht (US$16) before being deported.

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