NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Attorney Thatcher Stone files a class action lawsuit after his client claims she was stuck on the tarmac at Kennedy Airport.

Stone filed the suit on behalf of his client, Vivian Vumbaca of Manhattan, who he says was on an Alitialia flight from Rome that landed at the airport on December 26.

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The lawsuit is directed against the Terminal One Group that runs the international terminal at JFK. Stone says his client and thousands of others were stuck on airplanes for up to 11 hours last year after a snow storm.

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“The suit will seek to recover the inconvenience and the false imprisonment as said in the complaint,” Stone said.

“Ms. Vumbaca wasn’t fed, was required to sit in an airplane with overflowing toilets, no water – it took her several days at a minimum to recover,” Stone said.

The lawsuit is for $5 million.

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Comments (18)
  1. J says:

    There’s a simple solution to this problem. Just don’t fly during the fall and winter. If enough people just stopped flying during the worst weather seasons, the arilines would soon feel it on their bottom line and things would changes real fast…

  2. tired of this S__T! says:

    thats right sue them until they cry! these airlines just suck! i was stuck in hawaii outbound just as we were boarding another outbound plane returned to the airport because one engine went on fire. well it took 16 hours to leave that dump! PLUS!!! all the people that came back had to fly on our plane to boot! men women/children were crying. but that part i understand! I’m afraid of planes but it was my honeymoon
    but that was feb.1988 when these new laws weren’t even thought of yet! YEAH sue them plus it’s class action so she’s not the only one bitching! go for it BIG-TIME!

  3. Dave Stapleton says:

    The next time someone complains about paying a baggage fee, just think about this article. If made to pay the terminal will pass the expense on to the airlline who will pass it on to the consumer. It is the circle of life.

  4. Martha Erickson says:

    The same thing happened to me! They PUT YOU ON THE PLANE FIRST, then they tell you you’re taking off….they move the plane from the gate….and then, YOUR STUCK! you are on the tarmac, you can not EAT, (they don’t feed you)apparently they’re rules, but Pilot and Flight attendants were able to eat! I was stuck all night on the plane and when morning came, they told us all to get off the plane and wait until the evening to take off. All day and night stuck at JFK.

  5. Aunt Tootz Told Me So says:

    5 million??? Not even close to enough!!! Delta stole from my luggage and I haven’t found a lawyer … yet!!! Delta doesn’t even respect the cremated ashes of a loved one! I will have my day in Court with Delta, or should i say, my lawyer will!!! Idiot airlines!!!

  6. M.W says:

    Northeast XMAS storm of 2002, South African Airlines flight 0202 to Johannesburg SA. On the tarmac for 10 plus hours at JFK, I have my ticket to prove I was on the plane. Minimal ventilation frequently choked by constant de-icing fumes. Not one person complained during the entire time but then again the plane was full of international travelers not lame American cry babies. And I was thankful for the fact that one of my obnoxious neighbors was not sitting next to me during this stressful but unavoidable experience.

  7. xsprinter says:

    People exercise their right to sue too much that simple things like this go way out of hand. I mean come on, seriously? And people wonder why businesses go bankrupt and the economy is coming to a recession. Not everything in the world can be done for one’s convenience. It’s not always that these kind of stuff happen, it just so happens that she was on a plane that had a bad timing. It’s not only her who sat there against her will, but yet others manage to understand the situation. Compensation is one thing, but getting $5 million for sitting in a plane for 11 hours? That’s ridiculous. It’s people like her that makes American’s look naive and incompetent. Reliance with their freedom to express themselves and always exercising their right of way is one way to make them look stupid to many.

    1. Tommy C says:

      Airlines need to treat paying customers with RESPECT . Maybe suing them and taking money out of there pockets they’ll think twice about pulling stunts like this again.I doubt it though. God forbid you complain , you’ll be arrested and charged under the Patriot Act.If we stop using these airlines they willl and should go out of business or hopefully be absorbed by a Well-Run airline like Southewest.

  8. DP says:

    $5M is not nearly enough. If there is any $’s left in “Terminal One,” OR the Port Authority, then the suit should take more. After the suit has completely drained the PA and T1, it should keep taking and taking and taking… there should be nothing left except a small muddy spot in the middle of a big hole in the ground when she’s done suing!

  9. the internet says:

    i want to get stuck on a plane for 11 hours so i can retire!

  10. DON'T panic says:

    All someone had to do while on the plane was to terrorize it by rioting or anything like that and I bet you they would have gotten them off the plane in a heart beat….lol

  11. edwardgangi says:

    Reblogged this on edwardgangi and commented:
    More people should do this..

  12. Larry Schwarz says:

    This violated the passenger bill of rights.If Kennedy was unable to handle the incoming aircraft the captain should have been notified and could have diverted.The suit should also blame the port authority of NY and NJ.I do believe that 5 million is ridiculous.If she had any medical bills they should be covered and perhaps offer her a free Round Trip in business class on a future trip to Europe.I would take it in a second.

  13. Amber says:

    Hmmm I think snow storm is a good reason the airplane couldn’t unload….if you don’t want to be stuck on a plane try not flying in a snow storm.

    1. Joe says:

      How about reading the article before showing your stupidity……The woman flew in from Rome….thats in Italy…I dont think there is anything she can do about it. Besides if the weather was good enough for the plane to land, then they damn sure could have put it in a gate and got the people off….. 11 hrs to clear out a gate so they could unload….I realize workers in NY are slow! But that is ridiculous

    2. Aunt Tootz Told Me So says:

      YOU are not the brightest streetlight on the Boulevard, are you?!? As if anyone should be able to predict a snowstorm in advance! Even the weatherpersons can’t do that accurately. Geeeeeeezzzzzz!

  14. JB says:

    all the airline should be responsible for after an act of god? is a refund of airfare.
    $5million? is ludicrous and hopefully the judge will dismiss it…. I agree that 11 hours is way too long and there needs to be better rules for getting people off a plane in 2 hours or less in event of emergency PERIOD… and maybe the airline has a fine of 45million by the authorities but for 1 passenger? NO WAY..

    1. Rugbyball says:

      She isn’t suing the airlines, but the company that runs the terminals,
      “The lawsuit is directed against the Terminal One Group that runs the international terminal at JFK… ”
      They are responsible for clearing the snow around the terminals, running the Jet Bridges, and overall maintenance and operations of the terminal.

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