Man hospitalized after opening door on taxiing plane, exiting onto LAX tarmac, airport police say

ByJory Rand KABC logo
Saturday, June 26, 2021
LAX: Man hospitalized after opening plane door, exiting onto taxiway
A man was hospitalized after he opened a door on a moving SkyWest Airlines plane and "exited onto the taxiway" at Los Angeles International Airport, officials said.

LOS ANGELES -- A man was hospitalized Friday night after he opened a door on a moving plane and "exited onto the taxiway" at Los Angeles International Airport, officials said.

United Express Flight 5365, operated by SkyWest, was preparing to depart LAX en route to Salt Lake City shortly after 7 p.m. when then incident occurred.

The Embraer 175 aircraft "was taxiing away from the gate area when a male passenger onboard opened the door of the aircraft and exited onto the taxiway," Los Angeles Airport Police said in a statement. Officers and the Los Angeles Fire Department, and later the FBI, responded to the scene.

The FBI said the passenger pounded on the cockpit door before he exited the plane through an emergency door.

The man was treated for unspecified injuries and was transported to a hospital in unknown condition. His identity was not released.

No one else was hurt, and the airplane was able to make its way back to the gate area, police said.

In audio from the pilot's call to air traffic control, the pilot can be heard explaining the incident.

Pilot: Charlie 4 Charlie, would you please call law enforcement because we are gonna head back to the gate.

Tower: SkyWest 5365, they are calling law enforcement right now. They are trying to find out which gate you are going to be going to.

Pilot: OK. Looks like they may have blown one of our slides on the right side as well.

Pilot: We might have had a passenger that was a threat level jump out of the aircraft.

An arrest was not immediately announced.

On Thursday, a driver smashed a car through a fence at LAX and led police on a brief chase along a taxiway.