Footage has captured passengers clapping and cheering on an American Airlines flight after a disruptive woman who refused to wear a face mask was kicked off the plane.
Video taken by passenger Jordan Slade shows the woman, who he dubbed a “Karen”, being removed from the July 19 flight from Ohio to North Carolina after she claimed she didn’t have to wear a face mask because of a medical condition.
Masks are mandatory on all American Airlines flights to reduce the risk of coronavirus transmission.
Ms Slade said the woman had been disruptive even before she started arguing with cabin crew about wearing a mask.
“She was argumentative from the gate,” Ms Slade told the Daily Mail.
“She demanded to be boarded first and was causing an obvious scene. Once boarded she was making phone calls and arguing with the attendant when asked to put her phone away.
“She also refused to wear a mask putting others on the flight at risk … Another passenger even got up to confront her about her behaviour with no mask.”
In Ms Slade’s video, the woman can be seen taking her time to gather her three carry-on bags as masked American Airlines flight attendants waited for her at the plane’s exit.
“Just leave. We have flights to get on,” one passenger called out.
Passengers broke into applause as the woman finally left the plane, prompting her to angrily snap back: “You can clap all you want.”
On Twitter, people questioned how the woman was even able to board without a mask.
“How did she even get on the plane without one?” someone asked. “Why wasn’t she stopped at the gate? Did she have one on to get in the plane but refused to keep it on? Just drive Karen! Geez!”
“Why would someone pay for a flight and then forfeit their seat because they’re too stubborn to wear a mask? Why bother buying a ticket?” someone else tweeted.
Another person said: “She thinks rules and common sense don’t apply to her. She has THREE carry on bags on a small express jet. She should have been denied boarding for that reason alone, if not denied for not wearing a mask.
“When she stops being a part of the solution she becomes the problem.”
American Airlines has made it compulsory for passengers to wear face coverings with the exception of children under the age of two.
It joins many of the world’s major airlines in mandating the wearing of masks, including Qantas, which this week made masks compulsory on all flights in and out of Victoria.
Qatar Airways has gone a step further, requiring passengers to wear a plastic face shield as well as mask on flights.