Lankan cricketer tries to open plane door at 35,000ft
A cricket star searching for the lavatory on a trans-Atlantic flight allegedly caused panic among passengers yesterday when he tried to open the cabin door at 35,000ft.
The Sri Lankan was said to have pushed and pulled for up to two minutes at the exterior door on the packed British Airways flight from St Lucia to Gatwick after playing against the West Indies.
Terrified passenger Charlene Francis, 26, said: “It was pretty frightening. Suddenly he came over and tried to open the cabin door several times. It went on for a few minutes. He was pulling quite heavily.
“Some of his teammates were shouting and telling him to stop. Somebody said they had been drinking for four hours before they got on the plane.” The recruitment consultant, from Willesden, North London, added: “The flight attendants came running down the aisle and tried to calm him down. It was very scary. He looked very dazed or drunk.”
Mrs Francis said the incident happened six hours into the flight and the man was among a group of cricketers wearing the blue Sri Lankan polo-shirt with their country’s name in yellow lettering.
She heard him tell cabin crew aboard the Boeing 777 carrying 229 passengers that he had been looking for the toilet – an account confirmed by BA.
A spokesman for the airline said: “During the flight a man got up and tried to go to the toilet. But instead of going to the toilet he tried to open the aircraft door in mid-flight. The event was linked to an element of alcohol. He explained his mistake and cabin crew accepted it in good faith.”
BA stressed that it is impossible to open the pressurised door in mid-flight. At Gatwick, the players boarded a flight for Sri Lanka. Officials confirmed that the man was a Sri Lankan cricketer but declined to name him. (DailyMail)
Who is the drunkard… we want to know
Many get drunken on the flights, and many will miss out the doors and end up with troubles. Why this news came out with a big flash? I’m not trying to underestimate the problem, but this is not a news to react with this is bad news which published against a country.
Idiot, his name is Keheliya Rambukwella.I saw a pic of this man on fb. Oh yes…. he looks stupid.
Ban for 2 years as it created impact on country image.
This appears to be behaviour of a somnabulist. We do not have to label the guy as acting under the influence of alcohol without evidence.
Is Stupidity a crime?
Is Ignorance a crime?
If so, Sri Lanka has too many criminals.
please call bodu bala sena to stop these kind of practice
* Sri Lankan minister vows to resign if his son was proven to be intoxicated in flight
Fri, Jul 5, 2013, 12:31 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.
July 05, Colombo: Sri Lanka’s Cabinet Spokesperson and Minister of Media and Information Keheliya Rambukwella has vowed to resign from his portfolio if his son was proven to have been intoxicated during a recent British Airways flight .
Rambukwella’s son Ramith, a member of Sri Lanka’s A team, has reportedly attempted to open the cabin door of a British Airways flight from St. Lucia in the Caribbean to London, en route to Colombo, while the flight was in midair.
The Minister has said that he would resign from all government posts with immediate effect if his son is proven to have been under the influence of liquor at the time of the incident inside the aircraft.
Rambukwella has declined to comment further about the incident saying he wanted the investigation into the incident to be carried out without any obstacle.
“The crux of the matter is that if Ramith was drunk and had misbehaved, as claimed by the British media, he would have been arrested by the Police when the aircraft landed at the Heathrow Airport,” the Minister has said. According to Rambukwella, Ramith had taken only a glass of red wine prior to boarding the British Airways flight to London.