FAA To Investigate American Airlines Incident Involving Winthrop Students

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBZ NewsRadio) — The federal aviation administration has officially launched an investigation after a group of 47 high schoolers from Winthrop reportedly caused a connecting flight to the Bahamas to be cancelled.

The American Airlines flight was supposed to depart from Charlotte Douglas International Airport at 9:30 a.m. when a mechanical issue led to passengers switching planes.

During this time the group of teenagers reportedly became disruptive with some even refusing to wear masks onboard the aircraft.

Various passengers described the situation to a local news station.

“It was bad. First, they were yelling. They were cursing. They were being very obnoxious,” passenger Malik Banks said.

This caused the flight to be delayed until the next day, forcing passengers to spend the night in Charlotte.

“Some people’s vacations are ruined. They were only going for a couple of nights. Now, they have to get rebooked,” passenger Stephanie Krzywanski said.

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The students were recent graduates on a celebratory trip to the Bahamas through a travel company known as Breakaway Beach.

The company, as well as some of the graduate’s parents, have refuted the incident and said the students were punished too harshly.

Breakaway indicated that only one or two people in the group “may have removed” their masks due to ventilation and “unbearable conditions.”

“The actions of this passenger resulted in the entire group of graduates being labeled ‘unruly’ or ‘disruptive,’” Breakaway Beach said in a statement.

“Of course, safety is an absolute priority and any passenger not abiding by aviation rules and regulations must be removed from an aircraft.”

American Airlines, however, did acknowledge the incident. The airline said the flight was delayed was due to passengers who would not wear face coverings and becoming disruptive to other customers and refusing to follow crew member instructions.

The feds are now looking into what exactly happened. This marks the latest addition in a growing list of airline passengers causing disruptions.

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