Couple sues over cockroaches on Houston-bound Air Tran flight

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WCNC

Posted on November 14, 2011 at 5:04 PM

CHARLOTTE, N.C.— A Charlotte couple is suing Air Tran Airways, claiming their flight had cockroaches coming out of air vents and overhead bins and that flight attendants ignored their concerns.

Attorney Harry Marsh and his fiance’ Kaitlin Rush allege they spotted the roaches shortly after takeoff on the September 15 flight from Charlotte to Houston. The couple took pictures of the cockroaches and included them as exhibits in the lawsuit.

Marsh and Rush allege negligence and recklessness, intentional infliction of emotional distress, nuisance, fraud, false imprisonment and unfair and deceptive trade practices.

In the lawsuit, the couple claims several other passengers became aware of the cockroaches and that it caused great distress to a number of passengers.

The lawsuit also alleges flight attendants were too busy to investigate the problem or believe the problem existed. Marsh said when he brought it to a flight attendant’s attention, the flight attendant put her finger to her mouth. Marsh said his interpretation was the flight attendant was signaling him to be quiet.

The suit also claims the cockroaches made them sick. Marsh said they could see the roaches long enough for Rush to become nauseous. He said Rush now doesn’t want to fly.

Marsh said they had to throw some of their belongings away and wash others, out of concern cockroaches got on their clothes and into their luggage.

They allege mental and emotional distress caused by Air Tran’s negligence and failure to provide a clean, pest-free flight.

They’re suing for more than $100,000 plus the price of their tickets.

Air Tran said it can’t comment on the pending litigation, although it denies several of the allegations in the case filing.

Air Tran also said the cleanliness of their equipment is very important and their planes are regularly and professionally treated for bugs.

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