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Delta pilot dubs himself ‘servant leader’ as he issues pre-flight rules for passengers

A Delta Air Lines pilot has been praised for his one rule for passengers: be respectful.

In a viral video shared to Instagram, a pilot was seen making an announcement to Delta passengers during a delayed flight to Atlanta, Georgia. He introduced himself over the loudspeaker as “servant leader” and “captain of the ship”.

“I’m responsible for the safety of my ship, my crew, my passengers, my cargo. But, above all, the rules,” he announced. The pilot instructed passengers to “obey the commands and instructions of my flight attendants” before offering his final rule.

“Lastly, I ask that we all be respectful of one another,” he said.

The video was posted to Instagram by the popular account @aflyguytravels, where it has received thousands of likes. “Is he going for a flight or to war?” they wrote over the video, along with the caption: “I wonder if this Delta captain is ex-military?”

The Delta pilot’s simple etiquette rules have since been praised online by fellow travellers and flight attendants alike. In the comments, many people wondered if the pilot had some military background due to his pre-flight guidelines. Others commended him for encouraging passengers to “be respectful” to each other, considering the number of wild travel stories that have gone viral in recent years.

“I wish that the airline captains did this more often! It IS necessary, especially in this day and age,” one Instagram user wrote.

“Thank you, captain! Love it!! I wish more captains would do this!” another person said. “It shows his care, responsibility and authority!!”

A third said: “I love this! All pilots should do the same.”

Most recently, a Delta flight was forced to turn around one hour after take-off when maggots fell from the overhead compartment onto passengers. On 13 February, a flight was carrying passengers from Amsterdam, the Netherlands, to Detroit, Michigan, when a passenger’s suitcase containing rotting fish had opened.

Maggots fell onto passengers sitting in economy seats and the plane was forced to turn around. After the plane had landed, all passengers were instructed to deboard the aircraft and the suitcase containing the fish was placed in a bag to be destroyed. The plane itself was also deeply cleaned. As compensation, travellers were reportedly given 8,000 air miles, hotel room compensation, and a $30 meal ticket if they were delayed overnight.

In a statement to The Independent, a spokesperson for Delta Air Lines said: “We apologise to the customers of Flight 133 AMS-DTW as their trip was interrupted due to an improperly packed carry-on bag. The aircraft returned to the gate and passengers were placed on the next available flight. The aircraft was removed from service for cleaning.”

Earlier this month, a woman was almost kicked off a Delta flight for not wearing a bra. Lisa Archbold recalled to Yahoo News Australia her interaction with an airline crew member before her flight from Salt Lake City to San Francisco. According to Archbold, the female crew member ushered her off the plane to reprimand her for her outfit and told her that what Archbold was wearing was “offensive attire” and “revealing”.

Although Archbold wore her jacket for the remainder of the flight, she informed one of the male crew members upon exiting the aircraft how she felt about the situation, saying she felt it was “discrimination”.

“He replied verbatim, ‘Our official policy on Delta Air Lines is that women must cover up.’ It’s pretty gross,” she claimed.