Many of us will have fallen asleep on a train and woken up several stops away or worse still in the train’s overnight siding. Usually there’s a train back, or if it was the last train, an expensive taxi ride.
For Patrice Christine Ahmed, a Frenchwoman married to a Pakistani, falling asleep resulted in a 9-hour journey from France back to Pakistan – her original departure point. She then had to travel 9-hours back to France again.
Mrs Ahmed flew Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) from Lahore to Paris and took a sleeping pill. When the flight arrived in Paris, she was still asleep and it seems none of the crew noticed. I’m not sure what the cleaners on the plane (I’d hope that after a 9-hour flight there would have been cleaners) thought about the sleeping woman, nor why they didn’t raise the alarm.
After a two-hour turnaround, the flight took off back to Lahore. Mrs Ahmed awoke, realised that she was on the return flight and told the flight attendants. The plane didn’t turn around and so she had to return to Lahore.
PIA put her on another airline back to Paris, but said that she might have to pay as it was her fault that she didn’t get off! PIA spokesman, Sultan Hasan, said “It is a passenger’s responsibility to check about the destination and disembark when the plane arrives at the particular airport.”
I think that’s pretty cheeky as it must be the airline’s responsibility to clear the plane on arrival. I also wonder why the passenger manifest vs. attendant ‘clicker’ count, didn’t reveal an extra passenger? Imagine if someone died on a PIA flight – how many times would the body be ferried between Lahore and Paris before someone noticed that passenger x hadn’t touched their in-flight meal?