The FBI is trying to determine how a 25-year-old man died aboard an AeroMexico flight this month after passengers helped flight attendants restrain him.
USA Today reports that Alexander Siess of Austria had been drinking heavily and disturbing passengers aboard an Oct. 11 flight from Mexico City to Paris, federal officials said. He was pronounced dead in New York City after pilots made an emergency stop there. The New York medical examiner has not yet determined how Siess died.
His death marks the second time in three years that a passenger has died aboard a flight over the USA after being subdued by other passengers. In 2000, a 19-year-old man who had tried to kick in the cockpit door on a Southwest Airlines flight suffocated when passengers restrained him.
Flight attendants say the incident highlights the need for better training to help them keep order during a flight. The need is particularly acute after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. The attacks have prompted more passengers to intervene on flights, they say. Now, they’re concerned about passengers overreacting and harming those who are disruptive.