The frustrated pilot made the announcement before takeoff on a flight from Houston bound for Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. He said via the intercom system, “So here’s the deal, if this continues while we’re on the ground, I’m going to have to pull back to the gate, everybody’s going to have to get off, we’re going to have to get security involved and [your] vacation is going to be ruined.”
“So you folks, whatever that AirDrop thing is, quit sending naked pictures, and let’s get yourself to Cabo,” the Southwest pilot instructed.
Footage of the incident has gone viral on TikTok after it was shared by user @TeighMars.
Southwest Airlines told The New York Post in a statement, “The safety, security and wellbeing of Customers and Employees is the Southwest Team’s highest priority at all times. When made aware of a potential problem, our employees address issues to support the comfort of those traveling with us.”
Commenters were both delighted and aggravated by the incident.
“I’m gonna turn this plane around and everyone’s vacation will be ruined. Haha major dad vibes” one person replied.
“Pilot has ultimate authority. He doesn’t need a reason. If he doesn’t like something thats his choice,” someone else said.
Unsurprisingly, this isn’t the first time the iPhone’s AirDrop feature, which is used to send digital files to other Apple users nearby without using Wi-Fi or cellular data, was utilized for explicit images. The Post reported that a man did the same thing on a Southwest flight in June.
“I saw his iPad had airdrop open, so I knew it was him and, yes, I sure did make a scene,” TikTok user DaddyStrange wrote in a video caption that went viral at the time. The image allegedly showed oral sex.
“We can confirm this unfortunate incident occurred on a recent flight from Detroit to Denver,” a Southwest Airlines spokesperson told the publication at the time. “Our Flight Attendants immediately addressed the situation and the Crew requested local law enforcement officers meet the flight upon arrival, which they did and subsequently apprehended the individual responsible.”
“Southwest Airlines maintains zero tolerance for this obscene and unacceptable behavior, and we offer our sincere apologies to the other Customers onboard.”