Passengers forced to sleep in remote military barracks after Dutch flight makes emergency landing

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One passenger reported that the night in the barracks had “clouded” his journey.

ANNOUNCEMENT

Passengers aboard a flight from Amsterdam to Detroit spent the night in a military barracks in eastern Canada after the plane was forced to land due to a mechanical failure.

The Delta Airlines crew diverted the flight Sunday to Newfoundland and Labrador, WJBK-TV first reported.

Passenger Tony Santoro of Troy, in suburban Detroit, told the television station that passengers were housed in barracks during the 24-hour delay. “It honestly looked like a hotel,” he said. “It wasn’t that bad. We had water, soap, everything.”

While passenger Nathan Johnson said there was little communication from the airline about what was happening.

Delta Flight 135 was diverted to Goose Bay Airport “out of an abundance of caution,” the airline told The Associated Press in a statement.

“Crew duty times were impacted due to weather and runway conditions at Goose Bay Airport caused the airport to suspend operations. On Monday, Delta sent additional planes to Goose Bay to take customers to their final destination.”

Delta worked with Goose Bay officials to arrange food, water and supplies accommodation Sunday night, the airlines said, adding that passengers will be compensated for the inconvenience.

Nathan Johnson, 45, was one of the passengers who spent hours with his wife stranded on the tarmac waiting to get off the flight. Johnson said passengers remained on the tarmac for five hours waiting for another plane to arrive to take them to Detroit.

When the second plane finally arrived, Johnson said passengers they came on board and then told him that the crew had expired and they had to get off again. Johnson and the passengers were finally taken to the military barracks on school buses around 6 a.m. Monday.

Like the rest of the passengers, Johnson had arrived at the barracks unprepared to spend the night without his checked bags toiletries. Some passengers had no coats in the cold Canadian climate.

Johnson said he and his wife were forced to sleep in the clothes he had been wearing since leaving Munich, Germany, hours earlier.

“We were taken back to the rooms without knowing what our next time would be, or when we should wake up or when we should be ready,” he said. “There was no communication.”

Johnson said he looked out the window and saw the buses moving at 11 a.m. Monday. Then he and his wife rushed to get on the bus they returned to the airport, where they had to go through security again with a skeleton staff unprepared to assist all the passengers on the plane. The next flight wouldn’t leave until 5pm, while snow was falling outside.

Johnson’s wife had been treated in Germany, so the two were exhausted and anxious to return home to Lansing, Michigan.

“It was a little surreal,” he said. “She tarnished our entire visit.”

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