- REUTERS/Keith Bedford
Jet Blue pilot Capt. Clayton Osbon was subdued by passengers on board a Las Vegas-bound flight after making alarming threats about death in a bizarre mid-air rant which included references to Iran and Iraq.
"He was running down the aisle screaming, pounding on the cockpit door, saying 'Let me in, let me in, pull the throttle back, we got to get this plane down,' former Fox News anchor, Laurie Dhue, told Fox's Shepard Smith.
The pilot, who Dhue suspects had a "breakdown of some kind," was also heard urging passengers to pray while mentioning Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan and a bomb, according to The Boston Globe.
"They're going to take us down! They're taking us down! They're going to take us down! Say the Lord's prayer. Say the Lord's prayer,'' the pilot screamed, according to passenger Tony Antolino.
Osbon, a veteran pilot, had been tied up on the floor and locked outside the cockpit after his co-pilot noticed that he was behaving erratically.
Quick thinking passengers immediately subdued the pilot, after he escaped to the aisles where he was overheard making threats.
"Several huge men who happened to be sitting in front of the plane rushed down the aisle, wrestled him to the ground and got him subdued pretty darn quick," Dhue said.
The co-pilot was able to divert the plane for an emergency landing at Amarillo, Texas, where police were waiting and Osbon was immediately rushed to hospital for an evaluation.
Flight 191 departed New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport at approximately 7:28 a.m and was halfway into a journey of roughly 2,250 miles (3,620 kilometers) before the incident occurred.
This is the second terrifying plance incident to occur in less than one month, following American Airlines flight 2332, which had to be diverted after a similar incident occurred on March 9.
The Chicago-bound flight was diverted back to a Dallas airport moments before take-off after a flight attendant's terrifying outburst over the public address system.
"Captain! I am not responsible for crashing this plane!" the 43-year-old flight attendant from North Richland Hills, Texas was heard saying.
The woman, who had reportedly failed to take her medication for bipolar disorder, was eventually subdued and removed from the aircraft.