Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand
10 February 2010

CAA RELEASE

For further information contact:

Senior Communications Adviser, Emma Peel
Tel: 04 560 9646, or 027 272 3545
Email: emma.peel@caa.govt.nz

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Conviction for disruption on aircraft

A Hamilton man has been convicted in the Manukau District Court today after behaving disruptively on an airline flight from Fiji to Auckland.

Francis Douglas Eggleton repeatedly refused to fold away his tray table and swore at crew as the 737 aircraft was preparing to land at Auckland on 30 July 2010. He had been drinking alcohol throughout the flight.

Mr Eggleton was charged with disruptive conduct towards crew, and non-compliance with commands given by pilot-in-command. He was convicted of both charges, which each carry a potential fine of $5000. However, as Mr Eggleton was remorseful and had already spent a night in police custody, he was discharged without further penalty.

CAA Investigating Officer Corey Price said it is an international safety requirement that airline tray tables be stowed for takeoff and landing.

“It’s an important safety consideration, because passengers must be able to freely get out of their seats in case of emergency.”

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