Couple Sues AirTran Over Cockroaches on Flight

A North Carolina couple say they were so “emotionally distressed” over the sight of cockroaches crawling out of air vents and storage compartments during a Sept. 15 AirTran flight from Charlotte to Houston that they are suing the airline for more than $100,000.

Worse things than cockroaches on planes? Oh, yes.

Flight Attendants Allegedly Ignored Cockroaches

A Charlotte TV station says Harry Marsh and Kaitlin Rush brought the insects to a flight attendant’s attention, but according to the suit, she merely put her finger to her mouth which Marsh interpreted as a gesture of, “let’s keep this quiet.” Instead, the couple took pictures of the cockroaches. By the way, other passengers are alleged to have seen the cockroaches as well.

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Insects Allegedly Made Passenger Nauseous

Rush is said to have been sickened by the sight of the bugs, and is said to be unable to fly as a result of the drama. The couple also claims they had to throw out some of their belongings due to fear that the cockroaches might have gotten into their luggage.

FareCompare has put in a call to AirTran’s corporate communications spokesman, and we’ll report on the airline’s response as soon as we hear anything. UPDATE Nov. 14: An AirTran spokesperson told us they can’t comment on pending litigation, but did state that their planes are cleaned regularly and also received regular, professional pest control treatments.

In addition to damages, Marsh and Rush are seeking a refund on the cost of their airline tickets. Mr. Marsh, by the way, is an attorney.

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Published: November 14, 2011