Pilot Removed From Plane After Tearful Rant
'She was having a nervous breakdown,' says one United passenger
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 12, 2017 2:28 PM CST
File photo of a United jet at San Francisco International Airport.   (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

(Newser) – A pilot appeared to suffer something akin to a nervous breakdown aboard a United Airlines jet—but fortunately it hadn't taken off yet. Passengers aboard a plane on the runway in Austin, Texas, say a pilot clad in civilian clothes began addressing them via the intercom about her divorce and the presidential election (she called both candidates liars) before breaking into tears, reports the Austin American-Statesman. The plane was still parked at the gate as she spoke, and about half the passengers got up and left, reports NBC Bay Area.

“We hold our employees to the highest standards and we removed that pilot from that flight,” says a spokesman for United. “We brought in a new crew and they operated that flight.” In a since-deleted video posted by a passenger, the pilot can be heard saying, “Don’t worry, I’m going to let my co-pilot fly (the airplane)." Afterward, the passengers bound for San Francisco seemed more concerned about the pilot than their delay. "It was sad and by the end (the pilot) was in tears," says one. "I talked to her and hugged her because she was having a nervous breakdown."

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