A Delta Air Lines plane was grounded recently after two flight attendants on a Los Angeles-to-Minneapolis flight got into a fistfight at 37,000 feet.
The Jan. 22 altercation began when a disagreement about “work issues” escalated into the altercation, according to the Aviation Herald. A third woman attempting to break up the fight was hit by “flying fists,” the publication reported.
The plane was about 200 miles south of Salt Lake City when the captain decided to land the Boeing 757 at Salt Lake City International Airport.
The reason for landing, according to the Herald, was because the pilot “wanted to hear from his flight attendants.” The plane stayed on the ground for 80 minutes before taking off and reaching Minneapolis more than an hour late, according to the Herald.
In a statement emailed to The Washington Post on Monday, the airline confirmed the incident and offered an apology.
“Delta apologizes to those customers who were inconvenienced after flight 2598 from Los Angeles to Minneapolis-St. Paul made an unscheduled stop in Salt Lake City following an altercation involving two flight attendants on board,” the statement said. “The actions of these crew members in no way reflect the values and professionalism we expect from all of our employees.”
The statement added that the company provided a letter to customers who were on the flight, to “apologize for any inconvenience this situation may have caused.”
“In addition,” the airline said, “SkyMiles members received miles, while customers who are not currently SkyMiles members received a travel voucher.”
The midair boxing match wasn’t the first time a spat between crew members has grounded a commercial plane.
A flight en route to Chicago from Raleigh-Durham International Airport in North Carolina was forced to turn around in 2012 when two flight attendants got into a heated argument, according to ABC News.
Authorities determined that the fight was not physical and no arrests were made, ABC reported. A United Airlines spokeswoman told ABC that the employees were removed and the plane was re-staffed.
That same month, ABC reported, an American Airlines flight leaving New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport wasn’t able to take off when two flight attendants got into an altercation over a cellphone. The fight, which forced the pilot to return to the gate, turned into a four-hour delay for the passengers, ABC noted.