Forget snakes on a plane, we're talking cockroaches on a plane.
A lawsuit filed by Harry Marsh and his fiance Kaitlin Rush alleges that their Air Tran Airways flight was plagued by cockroaches. The couple flew from Charlotte to Atlanta on September 15, and witnessed the roaches crawling through vents and luggage compartments.
To make matters worse, they allege that the flight attendants ignored their complaints and suggested that they keep quiet.
Seeing cockroaches on the plane distressed a number of passengers, but made Marsh and Rush sick and afraid of flying, according to the Charlotte Observer. They were also forced to discard suitcases and other items for fear of contamination.
The lawsuit alleges that Air Tran was negligent and caused the couple mental anguish and emotional distress. They're seeking $100,000 in damages.
They probably won't get that much, because the suit will likely settle. The couple took photos of the roaches, according to the paper, meaning they have proof of their existence.
Roaches alone aren't sufficient to prove negligence, as Air Tran could have followed proper procedures to ensure their planes are bug-free. In fact, the company regularly has its planes treated for bugs, reports the Observer.
However, the pictures and any related publicity are not something a company wants to face. To keep the photos hidden, Air Tran will likely seek to strike a deal.
In fact, such settlements are fairly common. Companies often don't want to deal with the backlash and anything negative that may surface during litigation. They therefore settle lawsuits that are sure to illicit reactions similar to yours when you read "cockroaches on a plane."
- Cockroaches bugged us during Air Tran Airways flight, couple claims in lawsuit (New York Daily News)
- Negligence (FindLaw)
- Skydiving Sex Not Illegal, But FAA Investigates CA Sex Stunt (FindLaw's Legally Weird)