A mild panic hit New York City on Wednesday, September 5, as a plane arriving at JFK airport from Dubai was held on the tarmac with what was initially reported as more than 100 passengers becoming ill with an unknown malady during the flight.
BREAKING: An Emirates A380 in quarantine at JFK Airport right now awaiting CDC officials after about 100 passengers… https://t.co/IFF8wwB5D8— Sam Sweeney (@Sam Sweeney)1536155179.0
All 500 passengers were quarantined on the plane while the Centers for Disease Control arrived and began to check patients.
"Emirates flight 203 from Dubai landed at JFK Wednesday morning about 9:10 a.m. where Port Authority Police and the… https://t.co/kQx3guUuCj— JimMacKayOnAir (@JimMacKayOnAir)1536154181.0
Passengers, both ill and healthy, had an unpleasant experience:
@emirates worst flight ever Dubai to NYC; plane was basically a flying infermary. Many of these people should never… https://t.co/vGftHuh4N6— Erin Sykes (@Erin Sykes)1536155100.0
Several were able to snag photos and video from inside the cabin as authorities told passengers what was happening:
@emirates @EmiratesSupport Flight 203 Dubai to NYC #emirates #emirates203 https://t.co/CYqLXPurEe— Erin Sykes (@Erin Sykes)1536155682.0
So there is this keeping us on board https://t.co/GYHUXiT0Kl— Larry Coben (@Larry Coben)1536154762.0
One passenger, Larry Coben, documented much of the process on his Twitter feed.
Ambulances approaching the plane. https://t.co/klV7Xhy0bZ— Larry Coben (@Larry Coben)1536155571.0
All we have been told is that some passengers have fallen ill and we should remain in our seats— Larry Coben (@Larry Coben)1536155949.0
Cabin crew deplaning. https://t.co/rZWYSk448Y— Larry Coben (@Larry Coben)1536156127.0
Though the CDC suspected nothing too serious, they took all necessary precautions to ensure the public was safe.
Statement: Emirates can confirm that about 10 passengers on #EK203 from Dubai to New York were taken ill. On arriva… https://t.co/99Qthqs8Kc— Emirates Airline (@Emirates Airline)1536157086.0
All passengers being asked to fill out the Center for disease control and prevention form https://t.co/6SidlKx090— Larry Coben (@Larry Coben)1536157152.0
The initial estimated number of ill passengers was exaggerated. Many hadn't even encountered any sickness on board the flight.
I’ve just spoken with a passenger on the Main Deck of the #Emirates A380 currently quarantined at New York’s JFK ai… https://t.co/pKOOm7vfNt— Alex Macheras (@Alex Macheras)1536157099.0
In reality, there were just 19 "ill" passengers, and nine of those denied medical attention.
Given the airline say only 10 passengers were affected, it’s understandable as to why many other passengers (both o… https://t.co/EEUscj2PuC— Alex Macheras (@Alex Macheras)1536157594.0
CDC personnel on board. We will hopefully be deplaning shortly and having our temperatures taken.— Larry Coben (@Larry Coben)1536157708.0
Before long, the passengers were on their way off the plane.
Deplaning and having temperature taken https://t.co/MVxWqJPLTe— Larry Coben (@Larry Coben)1536158425.0
Heading for the terminal. https://t.co/fx2HufaXZi— Larry Coben (@Larry Coben)1536158667.0
They hit a few road bumps on their way to the terminal...
Folks at passport control debating whether we should be allowed off the bus. Ten minutes so far https://t.co/4AsammlJe5— Larry Coben (@Larry Coben)1536159225.0
...but were on their way home before long!
Happy to report that I am through customs and on my way home. Others as well— Larry Coben (@Larry Coben)1536159823.0
Health officials suspect the flu is to blame.
At the moment, none of the 10 sick people on Emirates Flight 203 at JFK Airport have left the plane. A @NYCMayor sp… https://t.co/IKIdBtbTpo— Eyewitness News (@Eyewitness News)1536159121.0
*EDIT*: the flight was direct from Dubai. It appears some of the ill passengers came from Mecca before getting on i… https://t.co/yptJYG1wpY— Eric Phillips (@Eric Phillips)1536160842.0
It would seem New York City has dodged a global catastrophe-level epidemic once again. Well done, everyone!
All the passengers are off and have been evaluated. 19 sick. 10 to hospital and 9 refused medical attention. Health… https://t.co/QAAtZfm9or— Eric Phillips (@Eric Phillips)1536165256.0
@EricFPhillips JFC, this is how every freakin' zombie movie starts, folks...— Paul Wu-Tang Clan 🌊 (@Paul Wu-Tang Clan 🌊)1536167906.0
@EricFPhillips @HelenBranswell Again what: “Refused medical attention” ? CDC must not be that concerned. Hopefully… https://t.co/exTPNBFzO5— Caroline “Caro” Witt (@Caroline “Caro” Witt)1536168851.0