06 August, 2017

Teenager couldn't wait to get to the gate!

A male teenage passenger on a Copa Airlines flight that had just landed at San Francisco International Airport Tuesday just couldn't wait to get to the gate. He opened the emergency exit, and climbed out onto the wing and jumped down to sprint across the tarmac apron.

A spokesperson  for the airport, Doug Yakel confirmed that at around 2.30 p.m on Tuesday 1st August,  a 17-year-old male on Copa Airlines flight 208 inbound from Panama City that had landed at the airport left the aircraft through the overwing emergency exit door, jumping down to the tarmac.

The teenager was stopped and detained by a member of a construction crew on the apron and was later taken into police custody. The aircraft then continued to taxi to its gate and all the other passengers disembarked as normal.  

Copa Airlines issued the following statement. 

“Copa Airlines confirms that upon arrival of today’s flight CM 208 from Panama City (Panama) to San Francisco (United States), a 17-year old passenger sitting in an exit row seat unexpectedly opened the emergency door, and slid down the wing of the aircraft onto the taxiway at San Francisco International Airport. The incident occurred a few minutes after landing, while the aircraft was taxiing to the gate. A Copa crew member closed the exit door, and the aircraft proceeded to the gate where all other passengers and crew disembarked safely. The passenger has been taken into custody by law enforcement. We are cooperating fully with the relevant authorities to support the ongoing investigation.”

Witnesses said the teen seemed 'fidgety' and 'anxious' throughout the seven-hour flight. He allegedly was already on the ground and running by the time many passengers realized the door had been opened.  After being taken into police custody the teen was later taken for a medical evaluation.