A man who opened a plane’s emergency exit door in the middle of a flight said he did it because he was ‘uncomfortable’.
The passenger, who has been identified by just his surname Lee, flung open the exit door while his Asiana Airlines flight was still 700 feet above the ground on Friday.
He was arrested after the plane landed in the city of Daegu but officers were unable to reveal a motive, saying: ‘It is difficult to have a normal conversation with him.’
Lee, in his 30s, has since told police he did it because he was ‘uncomfortable’ and ‘wanted to get off the plane quickly’.
He also told officers he was stressed after losing his job recently, South Korea’s Yonhap news agency reported today.
Authorities previously confirmed he was not drunk at the time of the bizarre incident.
One of the 194 passengers aboard the flight told Yonhap: ‘It was chaos with people close to the door appearing to faint one by one and flight attendants calling out for doctors on board through broadcasting.
‘I thought the plane was blowing up. I thought I was going to die like this’.
Several people fainted during the incident, with footage showing intense winds battering seated passengers from the gap in the port side of the cabin.
Some 12 passengers were hospitalised after the flight, with injuries including breathing problems and severe ear pain – all made a full recovery.
Passengers included schoolchildren and a youth athletic team. Witnesses described hearing young people screaming and crying.
Lee is expected to be charged with violation of the Aviation Security Act and other offences.
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