A real-life superhero prevented a potential air tragedy during a flight bound for China by subduing a crazed man who had tried to break into the plane’s cockpit.
The incident, which happened during an Ethiopian Airlines flight from Addis Ababa to Beijing on Saturday evening, saw passenger Cao Hongguo selflessly placing himself in the line of danger to avert a massive crisis from happening.
Cao, a Chinese bodybuilder, took action after an unidentified passenger began banging at the pilot’s cockpit door with his hands and feet.
Some of the plane’s passengers and the crew members asked the man to stop, but most were afraid to physically confront him. It didn’t long, however, before the muscular passenger came forward and brought the unruly man to the ground.
With the flight captain who soon arrived, Cao was able to keep the man pinned to the floor. For about 20 minutes, the man struggled until Cao eventually tied him up.
The man would later be able to break free but Cao was there to subdue him once more, this time, by tying him with up with headphone cords he had collected from fellow passengers.
The plane, which was carrying over 200 passengers, had to make an emergency landing in Lahore, Pakistan following the incident. The restrained offender, whose identity and nationality were withheld in the reports, was taken into custody upon landing. It was reported that he was heard shouting in both Chinese and English while trying to clobber the cockpit door open.
According to the Paper (via Shanghaiist), the man had recently lost his job and became suicidal. He was earlier planning to crash the plane and take everyone on board with him.
The plane eventually reached Beijing five hours behind schedule at 11 p.m. on Saturday evening.
Due to the airplane scuffle, Cao had sustained some minor injuries to his head. He noted in the interview that he’d rather keep the incident secret from his family so they won’t get worried.
“Anyone else would have done the same thing,” Cao said humbly.
Cao’s employer, the state-owned aerospace and defense company AVIC, made his heroism public by posting the thank you letter that the flight captain had given to Cao online.