Early Tuesday morning, JetBlue Flight 676 left New York’s JFK Airport traveled 150 miles and landed at Worcester Regional Airport runway around 12:15 a.m., according to FlightAware’s flight data log. Passengers would be left stranded in the middle of the runway for nearly an hour — all the JetBlue staff members at the Worcester terminal clocked out for the night, according to WCVB.
“It was silence, then the pilot said, ‘I have something embarrassing to tell you guys — there is nobody to get you off the flight,’” Passenger Sabrina Ruelle told the news station. “They had no staff available to get us off the airplane!”
Ruelle told WCVB she was trying to get home to her 6-month-old son and felt bad for families stuck on the plane with their young children.
“I saw this one woman who was feeding her baby before we got on the flight,” Ruelle said to the news station. “You could tell they were already exhausted, and they were stuck on that flight the whole time and the baby was crying.”
Massachusetts State Police arrived on the scene and were originally going to evacuate the passengers themselves. Authorities eventually contacted the JetBlue terminal manager and had him drive to the airport to disembark the passengers, according to the news station.
“We are working with our business partner who operates our ground team in Worcester to determine why a crewmember was not in place at the jet bridge to ensure this remains an isolated incident,” a spokesperson for JetBlue said in a statement sent to WCVB.