A swarm of bees delayed a flight for more than three hours after clinging to a fin, resisting the airport’s actions for some time.
NBC News reported that Delta Flight 1682 from George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston, Texas, was delayed after passengers were told that boarding was no longer an option. The airline announced that a swarm of bees had become attached to part of the plane’s wing and airline personnel needed to make sure the plane was not contaminated.
Although Delta said the flight was delayed approximately three hours, FlightAware.com said the flight left Houston four hours and 29 minutes late.
A passenger named Anjali Enjeti recounted the events as they happened via her Twitter account, saying: “My flight out of Houston has been delayed because bees have congregated at the tip of one of the wings”.
“They won’t let us board until they get the bees out. But how the hell is that going to happen? Won’t they leave the wing when we take off?” Enjeti asked.
Delta Air Lines said a swarm of bees stuck on a plane is “rare but not unheard of” and made several jovial announcements during the delay:
“A friendly group of bees obviously wanted to talk to the wing” of the plane, the airline announced. “Definitely sharing the latest on flight conditions at the airport.”
Enjeti kept his followers updated with an “update from the captain himself” and claimed that “the beekeeper can’t touch the planes! So they won’t come,” he announced. “2) Pest control isn’t allowed to spray the planes. 3) the airport doesn’t have a hose to spray them with water! 4) the fire department can’t come,” explained the passenger.
In the end, turning on the plane’s engine was supposedly the solution.
“As soon as our plane’s engine started, the bees took off!!! All Delta had to do was start the plane,” Enjeti yelled electronically.
The airline later apologized but said a delay was necessary.
“Out of concern for the welfare of the bees congregating on the wing of our aircraft yesterday, as well as to ensure that no surface of our aircraft was contaminated during departure, this flight had to be delayed,” Delta said. “The safe actions were not successful,” the airline added.
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