Raccoon on plane delays Toronto bound Air Canada flight
Word of Toronto’s easy-to-hack green bins and fondness for raccoon kind is getting around the animal kingdom, it seems.
An Air Canada flight was significantly delayed at an airport in Saskatoon on Thursday evening by the discovery of a four-legged stowaway on board.
CBC News reports that the Toronto-bound flight was scheduled to take off at 2:50 p.m. CST but that passengers were held back "for several hours" after a raccoon got stuck inside the jet.
Raccoon is out of the plane (and running across field now). Alive and well, due to folks like this: pic.twitter.com/MLfzCYd5Wf— Damien 🦑 (@damienlee) May 4, 2018
The curious creature was reportedly hiding in an air conditioning unit hose when workers connected it to the plane, prompting the animal to scamper up and into the jet's duct system.
Passengers were riveted by the scene as they watched workers try to apprehend the raccoon (who was presumably trying to start a new life in the big city. He was ready for the change. It was time).
University of Saskatchewan professor Damien Lee live-tweeted the entire thing from the terminal he was waiting in at Saskatoon's John G. Diefenbaker International Airport.
"Wondering what is up with AC1126," he tweeted to Air Canada around 6:30 p.m. ET, nearly five hours after he'd been scheduled to take off "Ground crew taking pictures and departure keeps getting pushed back. Info?"
A raccoon has delayed my flight to Toronto. pic.twitter.com/AafLuKrRli— Damien 🦑 (@damienlee) May 3, 2018
Just 15 minutes later, Lee revealed that the problem had been announced.
Airport workers, professional animal wranglers and even the plane's captains tried to get the little guy out for hours, to no avail.
Lee reported at one point that crews had started taking panels off the side of the plane in an attempt to reach the raccoon, and that staff eventually told passengers "We will not be rebooking anyone. We don’t know if the raccoon is going to live or die."
Still at it: pic.twitter.com/hT6kWSS7GS— Damien 🦑 (@damienlee) May 4, 2018
Fortunately, the adorable creature did not die.
An animal control worker was able to get the raccoon out of the plane, according to Lee, but left with an empty carrier. The raccoon had escaped, he says, and was last seen running across the airport grounds.
For their patience, passengers were given several $10 food vouchers and discounts on a future flight.
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