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Why do passengers take it?

Last week, a JetBlue airplane with passenger was parked on the tarmac for 10 hours because they couldn’t take off or return to their gate because of weather; other planes were in the same situation for 8-9 hours. A few months ago, a plane was parked on the tarmac here at Austin for 8 hours for bad weather. JetBlue flight staff reportedly opened up the doors to let in fresh air. In both of the extreme cases, passengers ran out of food, clean toilets, heating, and patience.

Why did the passengers tolerate this? Why would they put up with such miserable conditions trapped in an aluminum vessel for nearly half a day and not go anywhere? Are people truly that obedient? Were they that desperate to get to their destination that they didn’t want to risk “rocking the boat” by causing a ruckus?

The longest I’ve ever been parked was an hour a few years ago at DTW. Fortunately I was so worn out I fell asleep and didn’t wake up until the flight was in the air. I often ponder what that experience would drive me to if I was stuck on a plane for > 8 hours. If I popped a door and released the emergency slide, what sort of laws would they say I broke? Is there such thing as mutiny on commercial flights?

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