Coronavirus Hoax Forces WestJet 767 to Divert

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Well, this happened. A person decided to play a sick joke on an aircraft by declaring that he had the Coronavirus. More of he said he had been to China, but he said something along the lines of that.

To quote SimpleFlying:
“Approximately two hours into WestJet flight WS2702 from Toronto to Montego Bay, Jamaica, a man stood up and announced that he was recently in China and had contracted coronavirus.”

The captain soon announced that the aircraft would be returning to Toronto and even stated that he thought it was a hoax. The man was guided to his seat and secluded until the aircraft landed.

“We were just over Florida and all of a sudden we felt the plane do a pretty dramatic turn…We were flying in the opposite direction all of a sudden and it said our final destination was back in Toronto. So we were very confused and worried.” – Julie-Anne Broderick

The aircraft was diverted back to Toronto where law enforcement and medical personnel were waiting. After screening, RCMP confirms that the man was taken into custody on mischief charges. He is to appear in court on the 9th.

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Why would they go all the way back to Toronto?

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What happens in Canada stays in Canada I guess.

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Their hub most likely and not to abandon the passengers and give them a lot of money for hotels and stuff

Okay. But I’d think in a medical emergency (although determined to not be an actual medical emergency) they’d get on the ground as quickly as possible, being as they were in the air for 2 hours I doubt they’d have to dump little if any fuel.

Bruh that’s just plain Stupid

Yeah, but that’s not a medical emergency. There weren’t any symptoms which would require fast treatment nor anything urgent from what I understand and isolation would need preparation as well, so no urgency here to divert, but rather a calm reaction needed.

Also as said before a home base offers many benefits for an airline in such a case (reserve aircraft, reserve crews pre-arranged hotels and other things (to my knowledge).

There you go.

It’s all fun and games until the lawsuits start…

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What’s stupid is going all the way back to Toronto instead of landing in Miami or something!

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Its sad that people that that saying stuff like that is funny, totally not cool

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It had to do with protocol and whatnot.

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Only in Canada 🙄🤡

Well would you rather go on holiday to Jamaica, or fake having the Corona Virus, get arrested, stay in a cell for a few hours, go to court, most likely be found guilty and most likely either be banned from air-travel or a massive fine of the cost the airline lost from that flight?

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He ruin people vacation. Imagine being on the plane expecting a nice vacation then get ruin :(

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Bruh, some people don’t get it. Not funny Mr. Guy on that plane.

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i don’t believe miami is on the list of coronavirus airports, as miami isnt a huge hub for asian flights. but they could have just gone to atlanta :/

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Questioning why you should even joke about Corona???

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Honestly, I felt like that was stupid…think of the time and fuel wasted

To people wondering why the flight came back to Toronto:

As Toronto is one of the main hubs of WestJet, it made more sense economically, and lawfully. As the flight left Canada, the law enforcement was based in Canada, and according to WestJet, any flights which require diversion shall return to their origin airport, so the flight came back here. The pilot was following airline requirements as shown in their training, and did not divert to Miami, as Canadian Security would have flagged them as high risk if they had a recent visit to China, which means he would be removed from the flight and put into testing.

Im sorry if you don’t understand it made more sense when I said it

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