Passenger Pelts Flight Attendant for Not Being Allowed to Use E-Cigarette
Talk about overreacting!!
Anyone who flies knows smoking hasn’t been allowed on airplanes since the late 1980s. Smoking on a flight generally carries heavy fines and possible jail time.
These regulations do extend to electronic cigarettes as well. In fact, regulators with the U.S. Department of Transportation recently formalized regulations banning the use of these devices on any flight.
However, this didn’t stop a Utah man from overreacting when asked to put away his electronic cigarette. Traveling from Los Angeles to Salt Lake City, 42-year old Pogos Sefilian of Sandy, Utah became ‘combative’ when a flight attendant ordered him to quit using his e-cig.
According to reports in the Salt Lake City Tribune and USA Today, the incident started when Sefilian began puffing on his e-cigarette shortly after boarding his flight on Southwest Airlines in L.A. An attendant asked the passenger to put the device away but that didn’t sit well with him.
Sefilian begrudgingly stowed the device away but shortly after takeoff, he got it out and started puffing on it again. Again, he was asked to quit using the device immediately.
Later in the flight in an apparent act of rage, Sefilian began pelting the flight attendant and cockpit door with pretzels and peanuts. Shortly before arrival in Salt Lake City, the unruly passenger began opening overhead storage bins.
Once the flight safely landed in Salt Lake City, Sefilian was taken into custody by the FBI. He’s been charged with interfering with a flight crew and is being held in a Utah jail pending a hearing before a Federal judge.
Sefilian’s reaction to the flight attendant’s request is extreme to say the least.
While we generally don’t support e-cigarette bans, perhaps the rule for airplanes makes sense. Considering the devices are still relatively unknown when compared to traditional cigarettes, fellow passengers will perhaps mistake an e-cigarette for a regular one.
No doubt this can cause confusion in a place where it isn’t needed.
Either way, e-cigarette retailers at Modern Vapor urge users to be respectful when using their devices. If it’s clear the restaurant owner, airline, taxi cab or other place doesn’t want you using the device on their property, then it’s best to respect their wishes. While we think some regulations are harsh, we don’t want to seem insensitive or assault those asking us not to use our devices in their presence.