Turkish Airlines 777 Uncaged Cat Incident

A Turkish Airlines Boeing on final approach to land.
Photo Credit: BriYYZ from Toronto, Canada, CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons

On January 4, 2024, an uncaged cat caused a Turkish Airlines Boeing 777-300ER flight to Athens to return to the gate.

This article will cover the details surrounding the Turkish Airlines incident with a passengers’ uncaged cat roaming around the cabin.

Turkish Airlines Uncaged Cat Incident

Photo Credit: aeroprints.com, CC BY-SA 3.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

On January 4, 2024, Turkish Airlines flight TK1843 from Istanbul Airport (IST) to Athens Eleftherios Venizelos (ATH) in Greece was forced to return to the gate after entering the runway ready for departure following an unwanted visitor in the cockpit area.

The aircraft operating the flight was one of Turkish Airlines’ 35 Boeing 777-300ERs, a seven year old frame registered as TC-LJI according to Planespotters.

A passenger travelling with their cat was uncaged and wandering around the cabin, to which other passengers reported the problem to the cabin crew.

Data Credit: RadarBox

As you can see from the above data from RadarBox, the aircraft returned to the gate and ended up departing two hours late at 10:00 a.m. local time after the passenger and their pet were removed from the flight.

Subsequent checks into the incident had since revealed that the passenger had brought the cat onto the flight without reservation, payment or a suitable carrier for the animal. Thus, it is understood that Turkish Airlines will ‘blacklist’ the passenger, who has reportedly had similar behaviour on previous flights with the Turkish flag carrier.

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