American Airlines passengers are coming forward with stories about the strangest sounds being played over the intercom during their flights.
Last week, Emerson Collins, an actor from Los Angeles, was on a flight from LA to Dallas and heard the noises, which he described as “explosive diarrhoea, vomiting, and a weird, vaguely sexual moan”.
“Bad impression of Boris Karloff as Frankenstein’s monster” was also used to describe the sound show.
The odd cacophony lasted most of the flight, was projected over the loudspeaker, and apparently coming from nowhere, reported Gizmodo:
“These sounds started over the intercom before takeoff and continued throughout the flight. They couldn’t stop it, and after landing still had no idea what it was,” Collins later tweeted with a video of the flight, which subsequently went viral, racking up nearly 5,000 retweets and over 30,000 likes.
Listen for yourself:
The weirdest flight ever.
These sounds started over the intercom before takeoff and continued throughout the flight.
They couldn’t stop it, and after landing still had no idea what it was. pic.twitter.com/F8lJlZHJ63
— Emerson Collins (@ActuallyEmerson) September 23, 2022
Flight attendants assured passengers it was a technical mixup, but nobody can be too sure:
According to Collins, flight attendants and the pilots were just as stumped as the passengers as to what was going on. The internet has also remained puzzled: online listeners have speculated that maybe the plane’s speaker system might have been hacked or that someone on the flight had been pranking the other passengers.
Collins said he was “Nancy Drewing my way looking for the person who looks thoroughly amused by themselves” but he didn’t see anything suspicious in the small confines of the cabin.
One flight might be excusable, but it turns out there have been a few reports of “ghoulish moans and ghostly breathing” over the intercom systems on several flights in recent months, notes The Washington Post:
“It wasn’t the whole flight, but periodically weird phrases and sounds. Then a huge ‘oh yeah’ when we landed. We thought the pilot left his mic open,” journalist Doug Boehner tweeted about his recent Orlando to Dallas flight.
Tech executive Brad Allen wrote that he and his wife experienced the noises on an American flight in July. “To be clear, it was just sounds like the moans and groans of someone in extreme pain,” Allen wrote. “The crew said that it had happened before, and had no explanation.”
A few others also confirmed the same experience on their flight:
It happened on my flight August 5 from JFK to LAX and it was an older A321 that I was on. It was Flight 117. There was flight crew that was on the same plane a couple days earlier and the same thing happened. It was funny and unsettling.
— Wendy Wanderman (@wand948) September 24, 2022
“Currently on AA1631 and someone keeps hacking into the PA and making moaning and screaming sounds 😨 the flight attendants are standing by their phones because it isn’t them and the captain just came on and told us they don’t think the flight systems are compromised so we will..
— 🇺🇦 JonNYC 🇺🇦 (@xJonNYC) September 18, 2022
For some reason, all of the incidents involve LAX. Perhaps some vengeful past passenger or crew member has been taking out his frustration in a really creative way?
The hacking theory seems the most likely, even though American Airlines has said that the planes are hardwired without any external access or WiFi component:
“Following the initial report, our maintenance team thoroughly inspected the aircraft and the PA system and determined the sounds were caused by a mechanical issue with the PA amplifier, which raises the volume of the PA system when the engines are running,” she said. The first report the airline received was the Sept. 18 Santa Ana-Dallas flight, according to Jantz.
Frankly, that does little to quell the mystery.
Flying can be stressful at the best of times with adding weird groaning noises into the mix.
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