Members of the Russian team competing in the world junior championships were ejected from a plane that was scheduled to leave Calgary on Friday night.
Police confirmed the information to CTV in Calgary.
According to some people on social media, who said they were on the plane at the time, the Russian bus allegedly violated the airline’s rules before takeoff.
Teams from the Czech Republic and Russia were withdrawn from the flight for violating health measures. “The rules are very strict,” Russian coach Sergei Zubov told Izvestia newspaper.
Ewen Kinney, a passenger on the plane who was in business class, stated that a Russian official sitting next to him was smoking in the cabin and refused to put his mask over his mouth and nose. The flight attendants repeatedly tried to force him to obey the rules, but the man refused.
“He was playing Russian rock on his phone. They kept trying to shut it down, but she didn’t. I think they drank too much,” Kenny said of the Russian officials.
“He was definitely someone who should have known how to get on a plane.”
Kenny said the Russian team was sitting in the back seat in economy class. At one point, another Russian man stepped forward and hugged the annoying passenger.
Kenny confirmed that at least five police officers from Calgary had entered the plane and that all passengers had to leave the plane. He noted that the passenger who caused the problems joined the Russian players in the departure area, where he was waiting for at least five other officers.
The plane took off three hours late, according to Kenny, without the Russian team. It is believed that the Czech national team was also forced to stay in Calgary, but the Finnish team managed to get back on board.
Calgary police said in a statement that airport unit officers responded to a call at 5:45 p.m. Friday regarding the disruption of a Canada Airways flight.
“On arrival, officers assisted Air Canada personnel in keeping the situation under control and disembarking the passengers. Passengers were asked to disembark due to a disturbance involving several people in the aircraft cabin. Shortly after, most of the passengers boarded the plane and the flight took off.”
The statement did not specify who was behind the unrest or whether there were any arrests. Police did not respond to further questions about the incident on Saturday.
The situation could have caused a long delay to the flight whose destination was Frankfurt, Germany.
Also according to CTV, the Canada Border Services Agency is now in charge of the investigation.
Remember, COVID-19 forced the cancellation of the World Junior Championships on December 29, when the three-day event had already started.
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