Flight Files: Bad Airline Food, Child vs. TSA, Southwest News, No-Pants United Pilot

Your morning roundup of air travel news; sometimes it’s stuff you need to know, and sometimes just stuff you want to know.

Dangerous Airline Meals?

Some of you are no doubt thinking, what airline meals? Well, food is still served in first and business class (and on overseas flights for the rest of us) – but perhaps now you won’t be so jealous when flight attendants serve the “elite”.

According to Food and Drug Administration inspection documents obtained by USA Today,many meals served on major airlines are prepared in unsanitary and unsafe conditions that could lead to illness”. Airlines (and their caterers) however, say they work hard to insure the food is safe.

If you want more, Gawker has some unappetizing details. But, as we always say, pack your own lunch for the plane.

Six Year Old on Terror List

A 6 year old Ohio girl is reportedly on the Homeland Security’s terror watch list – something she and her family learned when they attempted to fly from Cleveland to Minneapolis earlier this month.

We have contacted the TSA to see if they have a specific response to this puzzling incident; we’ll update if we learn anything.

The child was allowed to fly after going through “extra security”. Her Dad apparently has a sense of humor: “She may have threatened her sister,” Santhosh Thomas told CNN. “But I don’t think that constitutes Homeland Security triggers.”

Southwest Begins Boston-Philadelphia Flights

Yesterday, Southwest Airlines launched service from Boston to Philly with five new daily nonstop flights – meaning there’s some new competition for US Airways.

Watch for prices to tumble a bit, which is usually the case when Southwest moves in. Meanwhile, the low cost carrier has a Fly Free to Philly contest which ends June 30.

United Pilot Drops Pants in Brazil

Oh, yes – the pants-less United pilot. Last Friday, Michael Slynn was asked to remove his belt and shoes while going through security at the airport in Rio de Janeiro; instead, he laughed at the airport security guards and “lowered his pants to his ankles”. Perhaps he was frustrated?

Slynn was briefly detained, then allowed to fly back to Washington, D.C. – but he had to sign a document promising to appear before a judge next time he’s in Brazil. A United spokesperson told FareCompare, “We are investigating the matter.”

Jaunted had an amusing take on the pilot:  “We think he’s awesome.”

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Published: June 28, 2010