Delta Pilot Snaps At Atlanta Air Traffic Controller

Filed Under: Delta, Videos

Via, here’s the audio of a Delta pilot losing it at an Atlanta ground controller on July 25, 2014:

Sheesh, seriously?

The amazing part here is that there are plenty of controllers that can come across as having an attitude (after all, it is a high-stress job), but this guy couldn’t be any calmer and mellower about the whole situation, and even laughs it all off.

Still not quite as good as Air China 981…

  1. I’m very happy that I do not fly any Ching Chong airlines if you do not understand English properly you should not fly

  2. @Jay:

    While I agree that speaking English well enough to understand and/or be understood by ATC is vital, your Ching Chong airline comment is unnecessary.

    Makes you come across like a bigoted tool…

    @Lucky: Now, about the Delta pilot video: sounds like someone needs to lighten up a little. Not sure I want a captain with a hair trigger attitude in control of what is essentially a flying bomb. And the ground controller was very professional as far as I can tell. Even the other pilots joined in on the banter at the end of the video…

  3. Jay, you do not seem to understand English properly either; most grade-school children use better grammar and punctuation.

  4. @Jay The moment you say “Ching Chong airlines,” you are basically saying “I’m an idiot, I speak hatred.”

    I wonder why the international community hasn’t gotten to using standard template codes for most common ATC-pilot communications.

    One can easily see the problem there: if Mandarin is hypothetically the standard, just think of a US pilot schooled in a little Mandarin, and hears a Beijing ATC say “this is an interrogative” in Chinese.

  5. @Jay, I don’t think “Ching Chong” airlines wants you to fly their planes anyway; it’ll take one less bigot and racist off the plane. English is the second language to a lot of countries around the world, and yes some people may have trouble understanding one person’s accent more than another’s. But most of these pilots and co-pilots know enough to get them around.

  6. Everyone has a bad day on both sides of the mike, move on. Delta Pilot seems to me to be a little harsh. He’s someone that is gonna wait for his take off clearance as long as possible. Given the choice between two aircraft someone’s gonna lose.
    Also keep in mind that this ‘sounds’ like a two way conversation, but it probably isn’t, this is something spliced together from a pile of frequencies and some transmissions are missing.

  7. I believe it’s taken directly from ATL’s ATC feed ( and if edited at all, would only be for brevity.

    Perhaps I misunderstood your meaning, but based on what you wrote, all conversations between aircraft and ground control are two-way and in real-time. I’m not sure how else they would communicate directions otherwise.

  8. “Some Americans’ ignorance, bigotry, and arrogance is truly mind blowing.”

    @ David – I don’t condone the statement, but the inclusion of ‘American’ in your statement was just as ignorant and just offensive.

  9. @Phil

    No it wasn’t. Pointing out the actual ignorance of others is nowhere near as offensive as using a racial slur.

  10. @chasgoose

    So, according to you, I could tell the truth about the ignorance, rudeness, and animalistic behavior of Chinese tourists that I have to deal with? Is that okay, as long as I don’t use any racial slurs, or is only PC these days to trash Americans and anyone who is white and lives in a Western nation?

  11. @Jay @Mark , you guys blame other non-native speakers is nothing to do with this damn harsh Delta pilot. Thanks for Lucky’s comparison between apple and orange. Some arrogant Americans never admit or apologize for their own faults , that’s a fu***ing good altitude either.

  12. @Mark Yes, commenting on specific behavior of SOME members of a group is far less offensive than refusing to fly “Ching Chong Airlines.” Note the supposedly “offensive” comment by David was saying that he was blown away by the ignorance of “some” Americans. Not ALL Americans. He was shocked that people in America still think its acceptable to use such phrases in a public forum (just because you have the 1st Amendment right to say something doesn’t mean its acceptable to do so)Jay’s comment was pretty ignorant so it wasn’t crazy to say one was blown away by ignorance. Just like it would be OK for you to be shocked at the foul, perhaps even “animalistic” behavior (that isn’t a one time occurrence) of SOME Chinese people in light of the poopcident yesterday.

  13. wow seems like the ntsb and homeland security has double standards!seems to me they need to focus more on airline & airport employee’s has a threat to national security!if i argue with a ticket agent over additional charges added on to an already paid ticket i am told if i dont want to pay they will refund my ticket and sell my seat to someone else!if i question screening procedures from a ill-mannered un-skilled,rude
    tsa agent,the swat team is called in to arrest me.if i politely argue with a passenger seated in aisle 16 b who is putting his addtional baggage in 72 c in they over-head bin designated for me and leaves no space for me then i am thrown off the plane and asked to take a later flight.this plane should have been sent back to the gate and the captain should have been furloughed!seems to me now a days i am more worried about the irrational behavior of airline and airport employee’s than i am of my fellow passengers.

  14. found it interesting that ATL uses Dixie for the 4th letter of the alphabet – when i worked ops at SFO the word was Delta, but i can see that would be confusing at the home of DL – any other airports that do something similar?

Leave a Reply

If you'd like to participate in the discussion, please adhere to our commenting guidelines. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *