Unfriendly Skies: El Al Crew Member Attacked by Passenger

A senior flight attendant was attacked and beaten by a passenger on an El Al Airlines flight from Israel to Britain last week. The passenger was arrested by local police for questioning after the plane landed in London.

Shortly before landing, passengers on the flight were asked to clear the aisles and store their luggage in the compartments above their seats. When one passenger refused to do so, the attendant asked him to comply with the safety regulations. At that time the passenger reportedly attacked to the attendant and started punching her. Crew members and other passengers separated the two and held the passenger down.

A complaint was filed against the violent passenger.

"The company will not tolerate violent incidents of any kind on its flights and considers this issue very grave," El Al commented

A number of contentious episodes have recently occurred on flights to and from Israel, and in the customs hall of Ben-Gurion International Airport. In mid-October, a couple who arrived late for the Paris flight attacked the station manager of El Al's subsidiary airline, Sun d'Or. After being told they could not board the flight, the two customers - tourists who had vacationed in Israel - beat the manager, and cursed and shouted at her.

The airline filed a complaint against the couple that day with the airport police.

In another recent incident, a passenger went wild during an El Al flight; and on a different El Al flight, a couple traveling together engaged in a violent squabble with each other.