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Channeling 'MacGyver' to Avoid Flight Delay

A simple solution saves Ottoson teacher Allison Oropallo, of Stoneham, from delays in vacation to Hawaii.

Since it is the holiday season I know a lot of you will be travelling. With winter arriving Thursday, I wouldn't be surprised if on your trip home you hit snow. In any case I thought I would share a "MacGyver"-type moment I had while traveling this summer on a plane.

This summer I traveled to Hawaii and on my way home I had some delays because of Hurricane Irene. I ended up staying in Hawaii for a week longer than I was supposed to (I mean who doesn’t want to stay in Hawaii for an extra week? But I did have to get home and back to reality).

I was supposed to be back on a Monday, but due to Hurricane Irene plans changed. It took 2 1/2 attempts to fly home; the first being Irene, the second being a problem with the plane, and the half point has to do with an overhead compartment that wouldn’t close.

I couldn’t believe it. The overhead bin won’t close so the captain can’t fly the plane. I’m all about figuring out solutions to problems or situations, so in my head I was thinking:

Solution 1: Empty contents of bin and fly home, or

Solution 2: Duct tape bin and fly home. As both solutions suggest, it really didn’t matter to me, I needed to get home and would do anything to fix this thing. So I came up with solution 3: Fix it myself. 

After watching all of the flight attendants fight with the overhead bin, I noticed that the claw that closes the bin was wedged open. And, once I saw that the airline was going to have everyone “de-plane” as they call it (I know this because this was the trip of deplaning apparently) I stood up and said “Can I take a look?” One flight attendant said, “sure,” so I took a walk over and cleared the jam by shaking the handle a little and bingo, it worked. I sat down and the plane took off.

Melisa Passanisi Thorne December 21, 2011 at 06:13 PM
Awesome Story! I bet the passengers were glad you were there! Merry Christmas.

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