– United plane delayed because of excessive weight –
– NTSB sees trend; launches wellness campaign for weight-challenged aircraft –
August 14, 2012, Newark Liberty International Airport– A United Airlines flight was delayed for more than 90 minutes Monday because of what an airline spokesman termed “…a serious weight problem.” Paul Beltbuster confirmed that flight 211, scheduled to depart Newark at 7am EDT and arrive in Chicago's O'Hare Airport at 8:10 CDT, was “…simply too heavy to fly.”
The culprit, said the airline spokesman, wasn't the hefty percentage of overweight passengers on-board but, rather, too much gasoline in the fuel tanks.
One Flight 211 passenger quoted Captain Roger OverandOut as saying, “It seems that when the mechanics fueled up our state-of-the-art A320 last night, they got a little carried away and put too much jet fuel in the tanks.”
As a result, OverandOut told the passengers and crew they had to wait some 90 minutes for a truck to be found, driven over to the bulbous plane and remove the fuel. According to F.A.A. sources, this is 35th time this year that an obese aircraft has been grounded.
MECHANIC BLAMES 'HUNGRY BIRD'
Dominic Steerage, a United mechanic on duty at the time of the incident, disputes Captain OverandOut's claims. “There's no way we put too much fuel in that plane,” said Steerage. “That stuff's liquid gold, and we're under strict orders to give each plane only what it needs to reach its destination and not a drop more.”
Steerage said the Airbus A320 itself is at fault.
“We've all heard stories of these jumbo jets sneaking over to the fuel tanks and grabbing a midnight snack, ” chuckled Steerage. “Why do you think they're called wide-bodies? They're hungry birds that can't help themselves. It's sad.”
When informed of Flight 211's weight-related delay, United's director of customer service, J.R. Oxymoron, said, “That's actually reassuring. We know Virgin Atlantic and Southwest own great passenger experience, so we want to take the opposite tack and deliver the unexpected. In fact, we're about to launch a new campaign with the tagline: 'Chaos you can count on.' That's a brand promise we deliver multiple times in multiple ways each and every day.”
N.T.S.B. GRINDS ITS TEETH
A spokesperson for the National Transportation and Safety Board confirmed that airplane obesity is, in fact, reaching epic proportions. “It's part of the larger problem that's sweeping across America,” said Joan Bottom-Feeder, R.N., executive director of nutrition. “We intend to institute an education campaign and wellness program for every aircraft that's designated a stretch, wide body or jumbo jet. Considering that, when it consumes the proper amount of fuel, the average airplane has a lifespan of 20 years, we may be seeing supersized planes literally falling out of the skies if we don't act quickly."
A spokesperson for the Plus-Sized Aircraft Association (P.S.A.A.) was said to be refueling and unavailable for comment.