Flight attendants for the Taiwanese airline EVA Air are taking a stand after they say a male passenger allegedly forced several female crew members to remove his underwear and wipe him after he used the restroom on a Saturday flight from Los Angeles to Taiwan.
During a press conference Monday, one crew member, identified only as Kuo, described the encounter, saying the overweight passenger claimed he recently had surgery and needed help to use the restroom, according to CNN and Business Insider.
Kuo, who was backed by the Taoyuan Flight Attendants Union, recalled that the man asked for help sitting on and getting up from the toilet seat. “getting on and off the toilet seat.”
She stated, per CNN, that the passenger asked for his underwear to be pulled down and slapped her hand away when she attempted to cover his genitals with a blanket.
Kuo said the passenger tried to convince the crew members to leave the bathroom door open and demanded the crew members wipe him. Kuo said she held him up as another female crew member wiped him.
“I’ll never forget that moment: With his feces still in the toilet, I had nowhere to escape,” Kuo said. “Now every time I’m forced to relive what happened in my mind, I feel traumatized.”
The Taoyuan Flight Attendants Union wants EVA Air to update protocol regarding passengers who need physical assistance. EVA Air says its crew can turn down inappropriate demands from passengers and that it will be investigating the incident, according to a statement via Chinese social media platform Weibo.