United Airlines are not having a good week.
The company have hit the headlines twice – once after a passenger was dragged from a plane because the airline had overbooked, and again when a disabled woman was ‘kicked out of her business class seat’.
And now, it has emerged that a man was stung by a scorpion while travelling home to Calgary, Canada, on a United aircraft on Sunday.
Richard Bell was on the flight from Houston with his wife, Linda, when something fell from an overhead locker and landed on his head.
Only when he went to pick it off… he discovered it was a scorpion.
Speaking to CBC, he said: ‘I picked it up, and it was a scorpion. And I was holding it out by the tail, so it couldn’t really sting me then.
‘I dropped it on my plate and then I went to pick it up again, and that’s when it stung me. It got my nail, mostly.’
Bell then flicked the scorpion onto the floor and a flight attendant covered it with a cup.
Another passenger then stamped on the creature before cabin crew threw it into the toilet.
Staff then made calls in an attempt to determine how poisonous the scorpion was.
A nurse who happened to be on board gave him some of the painkiller Demerol as a precaution.
Upon landing, border agents rushed onto the aircraft in a bid to inspect the creature – however it had already been flushed.
Bell was transferred to hospital but was told he would be fine.
United provided travel vouchers to Mr Bell and his wife by way of compensation.
Mr Bell added: ‘It’s just one of those things that happens, right.’
A spokesperson for United Airlines said: ‘Our flight attendants helped a customer who was stung by what appeared to be a scorpion.
‘Our crew immediately consulted with a MedLink physician on the ground who provided guidance throughout the incident and assured our crew that it was not a life-threatening matter.
‘Medical personnel met the aircraft after it arrived in Calgary.’
Also on Sunday, United hit headlines when a 69-year-old, who was identified as a doctor named David Dao, became one of four passengers who were asked to leave at random by the airline.
The decision was made after they realised that the flight to Louisville from Chicago on Sunday was overbooked.
The three passengers left the plane with no issue but Dr Dao refused telling staff that he was a doctor and needed to see his patients in the morning.