A flight attendant completely lost his cool after passengers became furious about a five-hour delay at New York's La Guardia Airport.
American Eagle attendant Jose Serrano got so agitated that he urged passengers to get off the flight "if they had the balls" to do it.
It all began when passengers preparing to get on a 1.25pm flight to Raleigh-Durham Airport in North Carolina were prevented from boarding until 4pm because of rain.
Then, as flight 4607 headed towards take-off, the plane got stuck behind 20 other aircraft lined up on the runway.
After 40 minutes the pilot decided to turn the plane round to refuel, sparking anger in passengers who were forced to get off at the gate.
At 6pm, the plane was refuelled and passengers were allowed to re-board, but the flight still didn't take off.
One passenger, Jon Wurster, told the NY Post: "People were getting really amped up at this point.
"It took forever to get back on the plane. The fuses were getting pretty low."
This is apparently when a frazzled Serrano lost his temper and started confronting moaning passengers.
According to The Post, several passengers said they had smelled alcohol on his breath before he started shouting over the intercom: "If anyone has the balls to want to get off, I'll let you get off! Get off!"
"I don't care anymore. This is probably my last flight."
Wurster added: "I think other people might have taken that to mean, 'Who knows what he's going to do when we get in the air.'"
Army veteran Scott Custer said: "I've been in five tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. I've been in combat and I've never felt anxiety like I did sitting on that plane."
At least three families left the plane after refusing to take-off with Serrano on board.
Port Authority police were called to the scene, and questioned several witnesses as well as Serrano.
No arrests were made, but the flight was eventually cancelled at about 8pm.
American Eagle said the flight was cancelled due to bad weather, but a law-enforcement source told The Post that it was because the plane did not have enough flight attendants remaining after Serrano was removed for questioning.
Airline spokesman Ed Martelle said American Eagle - the regional arm of American Airlines - is investigating the incident, and added that they determined Serrano had not been drinking.
He said: "From what we can determine, this is just kind of a group dynamic that got out of control because of weather delays and things like that.
"He has been with the company for six years and has an exemplary record. And basically, it appears that the situation with the passengers became so intense that he actually began to cry."
Federal Aviation Administration officials also started investigating the incident yesterday.
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