"Weirdest Flight Ever" as "Noises Out of a Horror Movie" Play Over Plane's PA System
“Like someone in pain.”
Passengers on American Airlines flights have been hearing some truly bizarre sounds over the PA system—and no one knows what might be causing them. The noises sound like someone vomiting or in pain, according to film producer Emerson Collins, who managed to capture the strange sounds on video footage. "It was either someone's unfortunate food poisoning in the bathroom or, like, someone with an uncomfortable approach to personal satisfaction," Collins told the LA Times. Here's what is happening, and what the airline has to say about it.
Collins was boarding an American Airlines flight from Los Angeles to Dallas on September 6 when he heard an unexpected sound through the PA system. "It was either someone's unfortunate food poisoning in the bathroom or, like, someone with an uncomfortable approach to personal satisfaction," Collins told the LA Times. According to Collins, his fellow passengers seemed to find it funny—but when the third outburst was heard, he jokingly asked a flight attendant if the pilot was OK. Keep reading to learn more and see the video.
The flight crew was quick to reassure passengers they were not the ones making the noise. "Ladies and gentlemen, we realize there is an extremely irritating sound coming over the public announcements," an attendant said. "The flight deck is trying to troubleshoot, trying to turn it off, so please be patient with us. We know this is a very odd anomaly, and none of us are enjoying it." Collins walked up and down the aisles to find the source of the weird sounds but didn't see anything strange. "I swear it's a prank," another attendant told Collins.
Collins took video footage of the incident, documenting his reaction to the weird sounds playing over the PA. "Someone on this flight seems to have broken into the intercom system and continues to make a sound that is somewhere between an orgasm and vomiting," he said. "The weirdest flight ever. These sounds started over the intercom before takeoff and continued throughout the flight. They couldn't stop it, and after landing still had no idea what it was."
Passengers on other flights have experienced identical incidents, including Bradley P. Allen, a technology executive from Manhattan Beach. Allen says he experienced something very similar during a July American Airlines flight from John F. Kennedy Airport to LAX. According to Allen, it sounded like someone was "incapacitated by a severe gastrointestinal problem, and is just moaning," describing the incident as "unnerving." "With all the cultural allusions to things like gremlins on the wings of the plane or snakes on a plane, or whatever, we're all kind of primed for crazy, disturbing things to happen on aircraft like that," he said. "And it just sort of fit that bill."
According to AA spokesperson Sarah Jantz, the company investigated the strange incidents and has concluded that "mechanical issues" are to blame. Jantz also says the intercom system has no external access and WiFi connectivity, which means it would be impossible to hack. "Our maintenance team thoroughly inspected the aircraft and the PA system and determined the sounds were caused by a mechanical issue with the PA amplifier, which raises the volume of the PA system when the engines are running."