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Spirit Airlines Passengers Stranded For Hours After Diversion

International Business Times logo International Business Times 7/11/2018 Suman Varandani

a large passenger jet sitting on top of a runway © Provided by IBT US Passengers aboard a Spirit Airlines flight shared their ordeal after being stranded for hours when their flight diverted to Los Angeles due to bad weather Monday. The plane was traveling from Oakland, California, to Las Vegas, Nevada.

Courtney Adkins, who was traveling with her family of four, including a two-year-old and a four-year-old, said passengers on board the plane had to wait for two hours before they were allowed to deboard the jet at Los Angeles. The plane was sitting on the tarmac and no crew informed the passengers of the delay.

After everyone deboarded the plane, the airline announced that their flight to Las Vegas had been canceled. Adkins said she and her stranded family were given no further instructions or support. The frustrated passenger told Daily Mail that her family had to spend the night sleeping on the floor at Los Angeles International Airport before they received boarding tickets for another flight departing Tuesday morning.

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"If I could talk to them, I would definitely tell them they need to have a training course for their employees on events that are unexpected, on how to properly communicate with their guests," Adkins told the daily.

A representative for Spirit Airlines told Daily Mail that passengers were not left without support. They were provided with snacks, water, and meal vouchers in the terminal. The representative also said that booking hotel rooms for the passengers was not justified as they needed to be back at the airport shortly after deplaning.

"Flight 466 got to the gate just before midnight," the airline said. "By the time our Guests were deplaned, and our agents spent time rebooking them, it was much later... Most of our Guests were set to board their replacement flight at 5 am."

"It was not prudent to provide hotel rooms for only a couple hours, especially due to the increased TSA processing time expected because of the more 100 unplanned diversions to LA last night," the airline added. 

The airline also released an official statement apologizing for the inconvenience caused due to the delay: "Spirit Airlines flight 466 was one of many that were forced to divert to LAX because of dangerous weather conditions in Las Vegas. Because these diversions are unplanned, there is often a delay in gate availability. We apologize to our Guests for the inconvenience and frustration a diversion like this causes, but the safety of our Guests and Crew is paramount. We worked with Guests to reaccommodate them and appreciate their patience."

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