Air Canada Pilot Orders 23 Pizzas for Passengers Stuck on a Grounded Plane During a Snow Storm
The pilot of a grounded Air Canada flight ordered nearly two dozen pizzas for hungry passengers stuck aboard his plane for eight hours.
According to the CBC, the flight had left Toronto, Ontario, on Monday afternoon, heading towards Halifax, Nova Scotia. Before the plane arrived, however, severe weather forced it to be diverted to Fredericton, New Brunswick, where passengers were stranded on the snowy tarmac.
Hoping to ease some of his passengers’ travel woes, the pilot placed an order for 23 pizzas from a nearby restaurant, Minglers Restaurant and Pub in Oromocto, New Brunswick, to be delivered directly to the plane.
The owner of the restaurant, Roch Larivée, said the staff was surprised by the order.
“We do a catering business here too, so we’re used to unusual numbers, but I mean on a storm night? For a plane? No,” Larivée told the CBC, adding, “I hope everybody enjoyed their pizzas.”
Passenger Bill Karsten, who tweeted photos of the pizza arriving, told the Canadian news outlet, “[The pilot] walked entirely down the length of the plane just to make sure we knew what was going on and whatnot, before departing to Halifax. So I think the mood was set, in reality, by the great work of the captain.”
Passenger Philomena Hughes also spoke to the CBC, telling them the pilot made their experience “easier” by ordering the pizza and keeping the passengers informed of the status of their flight.Hughes estimated that the passengers had been in the plane for almost eight hours from the time they boarded in Toronto. “It was something that could have been very stressful. He made it a lot easier,” she said.
Hughes added that the pilot made sure to credit the crew with helping him acquire the pizzas.
“He wanted everyone to know that it was the whole crew, that he couldn’t have done it without the crew,” Hughes told the CBC. “There was lots of help, there were a couple of Air Canada Jazz pilots that were travelling on the plane and they were helping to pick up the pizza and distribute it. Everybody chipped in, so he didn’t want to take the whole credit for himself.”
The Air Canada pilot, who is not named, isn’t the first crew member to placate stranded passengers with some slices.
In September 2018, an American Airlines pilot delivered pizza to the 159 passengers in his cabin after their flight, scheduled to fly from Los Angeles to Dallas/Fort-Worth, was diverted overnight to Wichita Falls, Texas, due to a storm.