Alaska Airlines says 11 passengers were removed from a flight headed from Juneau to Seattle on Monday night due to "disruptive behavior onboard."
Company communications manager Roy Lane said Alaska Airlines Flight 78 was set to depart Juneau at 6 p.m. It was taxiing on the runway for takeoff when it returned to the gate, Lane said.
"Flight attendants reported to the pilots that a group of passengers was not following safety protocol for departure," Lane said.
According to the airline, the passengers refused to stop charging their cellphones during takeoff, fasten their seatbelts and put their seats upright. They also reportedly were playing music loudly and made inappropriate comments to the flight attendants.
When the plane returned to the gate, 11 members of that group were asked to deplane, Lane said. Others who were part of the group stayed on the plane.
"While this situation does not happen every day, it's not uncommon for us to have to remove passengers if they're behaving in a disruptive manner or not following crew member instructions," Lane said. "To us, this is a safety issue – if a customer will not comply with crew member requests on the ground, it's not safe for us to allow them to fly until they demonstrate that they're willing to follow basic safety instructions."
The removed passengers boarded a flight two hours later, and those who needed to make connections did so, Lane said.