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Allegiant passenger: we were left stranded

Flight diverted from N.F. to Syracuse
Posted at 6:31 PM, Sep 30, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-30 18:31:14-04

Chris Hart is still confused why her flight from St. Petersburg, Florida to Niagara Falls was diverted to Syracuse Thursday night. “It's just very disappointing. Everything was fine. I could see the runway, the ground, no rain nothing.”

Hart was one of dozens aboard Allegiant Air flight 894, and according to her, they were on track to land at Niagara Falls airport just before 5 pm. But after attempting to land twice, Hart said the pilot announced they wouldn't be landing there at all because of the weather. “We were all like: there's no weather issues. It's just clouds. That's all it was.”

The pilot diverted the plane to Syracuse where Hart said all of the passengers waited for three hours. “They told us your flight's been canceled, and we have no buses. So, you're responsible for getting yourself where you need to go.”

What's worse is she said after Allegiant dropped off all the passengers in Syracuse, the pilot took an empty plane back to Niagara Falls. We checked flight records and they show the plane did indeed land in the falls at 10:31 P.M. 

Hart said the airline didn't offer an alternative way back to Buffalo. So, she rented a car. “It's an inconvenience to me. I'm only here 2.5 days. It's an inconvenience to everyone that was on that plane.”

Hart said she isn't looking for any compensation. She wants an explanation for why passengers were left in Syracuse when the plane flew back to the Falls anyway. 

Calls to Allegiant weren’t returned.

A spokesman for the N.F.T.A. confirms weather was to blame for the diversion. He said it’s up to the pilot to decide how to operate the aircraft.