Dr. Harry Greenspun, who leads health IT efforts at the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions, was among the passengers who survived a scare on board American Eagle flight 4305 late last Wednesday. According to news accounts, a 20-year-old Saudi man on the flight from New York’s JFK Airport to Indianapolis tried to open one of the plane’s doors while in midair.
Several other passengers reportedly stopped the man and escorted him back into his seat for the duration of the flight. Upon landing, police detained the suspect. Greenspun, who was headed to Indianapolis on business, was interviewed by a local TV news station, according to the Daily Mail. (Why a British paper? I found out about this myself from the British-born Matthew Holt, mack daddy of The Health Care Blog and the health 2.0 movement.)
Out of curiosity, I checked the stats for flight 4305. It was on an Embraer ERJ-145 regional jet, a 50-seater. As a regular customer of American Airlines and its American Eagle affiliate, I know that Eagle has just a single flight attendant on planes with no more than 50 seats, as federal law allows. That’s not a lot of eyes to keep track of everything going on in the cabin. Good thing the other passengers were alert.
Dr. Greenspun, we’re glad you’re safe.