AUSTIN, Texas — United Airlines says it’s investigating after a pilot was removed from a San Francisco-bound flight before it left Austin, Texas, Saturday.
Passengers say the pilot wasn’t wearing a uniform when she boarded the plane. She got on the intercom system and reportedly talked about politics, the presidential election and her divorce.
Passengers also say she asked for a vote on whether to change her clothes to her uniform or fly as is.
At that point, about 20 passengers got off the plane because they felt uncomfortable.
United Airlines spokesman Charlie Hobart confirmed the pilot wasn’t in uniform when she boarded the plane Friday. He says another pilot was brought in and the flight was delayed about two hours.
Hobart also confirmed the pilot was the woman shown in videos posted on social media talking to passengers over the intercom. Some people tweeted they were passengers on the flight and that the woman seemed unstable.
Hobart says he didn’t immediately have details about the incident, including why the pilot was allowed on the plane in plain clothes or if anyone thought something was amiss before she boarded. He says the company will discuss the incident with the pilot.
Passengers did show quite a bit of compassion and concern for her well-being.
“I feel very bad for her and the situation she is under,” one passenger told NBC News.