Flier seated next to corpse receives partial fare refund
USA TODAY 6-26-12
A Swedish woman who complained she had to sit near a dead passenger on an overnight flight from Amsterdam to Africa has received a partial refund of her fare.
Lena Pettersson, a reporter for Sweden's public Sveriges Radio, tells the Expressen newspaper her seatmate appeared extremely ill when she boarded a Kenya Airways flight.
Pettersson said the man "was sweating and was having convulsions" in view of the attendants, but that the crew nonetheless closed the cabin doors and pulled away from the gate. Pettersson -- bound for the Tanzanian city of Dar es Salaam -- says the man died shortly after takeoff and she had to sit within a few feet of his corpse as the flight continued on its long overnight route to Africa.
Most media reports say that the incident happened on a Kenya Airways flight from Amsterdam to Dar es Salaam. However Kenya Airways does not offer regularly schedule service on that route, so -- presumably -- the incident came on a connecting itinerary via Kenya Airways' hub in Nairobi.
The Daily Mail of London, also citing the Swedish language Expressen newspaper, writes the "cabin crew appeared at a loss as to what to do next, so flight attendants wrapped the corpse in a blanket as best they could and laid him out across three seats, Expressen reported."
Pettersson says attendants were able to move most other passengers to empty seats away from the man's corpse, but – with no other empty seats available – she remained just across the aisle from the dead passenger. She described the man as tall, saying his feet stuck out into the aisle after he was laid on the empty row of seats.
She complained to Kenya Airways after she returned from her holiday to Tanzania. After "several months" of back-and-forth correspondence with the carrier, Kenya Airways reimbursed her about $713 – or about half the cost of her round-trip ticket.
Not the actual dead flyer, but tall.
"This feels much better. It is reasonable," Pettersson is quoted by The Local as saying to Sveriges Radio.