Man Falls Asleep on Flight & Wakes Up on Dark, Empty, Freezing Plane

planeWhenever I've been super tired and semi-dozed off on the train or subway, I've always been nervous that I'd miss my stop. Which I guess is why I can never get a good, solid nap in on my commute home from work. But when it comes to planes, who hasn't fallen asleep? You can't miss your stop on a plane. Or, wait a minute, you totally can.

Tom Wanger fell asleep during his United Express flight from Louisiana to Houston, and when he woke up, he was surprised to see he was sitting in a dark, freezing, locked airplane. Nope. Nobody woke him when it was time to disembark. Awk-ward.


Wanger was on his way to California, but when he arrived at his layover, not a single person decided to notify him that the plane had landed -- including the staff. Thankfully, he had his cellphone. "I called my girlfriend, and she thought I was crazy. I said, 'Debbie I'm locked on the plane,'" Wanger told ABC. "I said, 'I'm telling you the truth. You better go somewhere and get me off this plane." About a half hour later, workers rescued Wanger from the empty plane. In an effort to keep him quiet, the airline apparently put Wanger up in a nearby hotel and gave him a $250 flight voucher to make the ordeal go away. That obviously didn't work too well, though, since you're reading about this now. United Express issued this statement: "Express Jet is investigating to determine how this occurred, we sincerely apologize for the inconvenience this caused the passenger."

Now, I have three questions here: One, what kind of sleep aid did Wanger use, because it sounds delightful? Two, did he eat any peanuts/fix himself a stiff drink while he was waiting to be rescued? And three, how did nobody -- not a single person -- see a sleeping man on a plane?! It's kind of scary when you think about it. What if this man needed medicine? What if he froze to death? Or, as James Conway, a former FBI agent and counterterrorism expert at Global Intel Strategies, said, "Let this be a lesson, it was innocent enough, it was a faux pas, but if an individual is going to be missed, what about a package or a backpack or a piece of luggage that could pose a threat to the aircraft on the next flight?"

Glad that Wanger is fine after the ordeal, but for the love of god, do a once-over on the plane before getting off, United Express. And in other news, you guys are lucky this dude isn't sue-happy. He could have made a pretty penny off of you.

Whose fault do you think this is?


Image via epSos .de/Flickr

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