A teenage passenger apparently impatient for his plane to reach a gate at San Francisco International Airport opened an emergency exit, slid down the plane's wing, fell to the ground, then started running Tuesday, officials say. Passengers say the 17-year-old US citizen, who was traveling alone, had appeared "anxious" and "fidgety" throughout the Copa Airlines flight from Panama City, per KGO and the San Jose Mercury News. Still, they were shocked when he stood from his seat, busted out, and "slipped off" the wing minutes after the plane landed around 2:30pm, a passenger tells NBC Los Angeles.
The man says it all happened too fast for any other passengers on board to react. "They were yelling, 'Tell the flight attendants. Relay the message back. The door's open. Someone jumped off,'" he says. "It was pretty crazy." The teen, who was uninjured, was seized by a construction crew on the tarmac and taken into custody by Customs and Border Protection, says an airport official. He was also reportedly taken to a hospital for a psychiatric evaluation. Meanwhile, "a Copa crew member closed the exit door, and the aircraft proceeded to the gate," the airline says in a statement, per KGO. "All other passengers and crew disembarked safely." (Read more San Francisco stories.)