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Woman claims sexual assault on red-eye flight to Charlotte

A 33-year-old woman was flying a red-eye flight from San Diego to Charlotte, North Carolina, on Monday when a stranger took the seat next to her younger sister.

>> Read more trending news 

She said they were instantly nervous when he first spoke to them.

"He said, 'I get to sit next to the two most beautiful women on the plane,' and we were concerned," the woman, who did not want to be identified, told WSOC-TV.

The direct flight was more than four hours long, leaving late Monday from San Diego and arriving early Tuesday morning in Charlotte.

As the American Airlines flight was just taking off, the victim told WSOC the man leaned over.

"He actually reached over, over the top of the armrest that was separating he and I, and just basically rubbed down my entire thigh," she said.

She said one of his fingers briefly got caught in a hole in her jeans.

Her sister, seated in the window seat, told her to call the flight attendant. Instead, she wanted to handle it quietly.

"I hit his arm away from me, and just you know, made it very clear, do not touch me," she said.

The man mumbled something and she moved as close to her sister as possible, then later, fell asleep.

Earlier, she had noticed the smell of alcohol on the man's breath, but didn't think he was acting drunk.

She was jolted awake about an hour into the flight.

"I woke up to him completely on top of my left side. He had his arms on me and I was hitting him," she said.

She pressed the button for the flight attendant, who took the man to the front of the plane. She didn't see him again until they landed in Charlotte, and police were talking to him at the gate.

"The bruises came up the next morning, and I didn't know those were there, from kind of fighting him off of me," she said.

WSOC reached out to American Airlines Thursday, but did not receive a response.

The district attorney in San Diego said the office is not involved in the investigation.

>> Related: Delta will now pay passengers up to $9,950 to give up seats

It's not clear if the suspect has been identified. A report was filed with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg police, but the department told WSOC there were no arrests.

>> Related: Woman claims Delta paid her $4,000 to give up seat on overbooked flight

Woman claims Delta paid her $4,000 to give up seat on overbooked flight

How much money is a single football game worth to you?

For a plane full of University of Georgia fans heading to South Bend, Indiana, to watch their team play Notre Dame last weekend, that number is pretty high.

>> Read more trending news

WSB-TV sports director Zach Klein was on a full Delta Air Lines flight Friday morning leaving from Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.

The plane was overbooked and when the crew realized it was overbooked, they started offering money for someone to give up their seat.

“Offers started at $2,200. Then it was $2,800. Later it got to $3,000,” Klein said.

Tracy Jarvis Smith eventually took the offer when the crew bumped the amount to $4,000.

“$4,000 was my magic number,” Smith later tweeted.

According to Klein, Smith was bumped for a 7 p.m. flight that day.

“Not one fan wanted to get in late,” Klein said.

Klein posted a photo with the Georgia fan who took Smith’s seat.

Smith also tweeted later that day. She said she got in about eight hours later than she had planned, making it worth the money.

The Georgia Bulldogs went on to beat the Fighting Irish 20-19.

>> Related: Delta will now pay passengers up to $9,950 to give up seats

 

Affordable Olive Garden deal offers trip to Italy, all-you-can-eat pasta

Olive Garden announced Tuesday that it is offering a new all-you-can-eat promotion, the Pasta Passport to Italy, in celebration of the return of its Never Ending Pasta Pass. With the Never Ending Pasta Pass, customers can purchase a $100 pass that allows them to consume an unlimited amount of pasta during each visit between Sept. 25 and Nov. 19.

>> Read more trending newsThe promotion allows customers to pick from seven pastas and six sauces and includes unlimited soup or salad and breadsticks.

A second pass affords customers all the benefits of the Never Ending Pasta Pass plus the opportunity to go to Italy for $200. The eight-day European vacation includes airfare, hotel, meals, ground transportation and daily activities for two during April 2018.

“Recipients of a Pasta Passport to Italy will ... start by exploring the sprawling cobble-stoned streets and terracotta rooftops of Sienna, then will travel throughout Italy, including Florence and Assisi, cities known for their ancient architecture and fresh, seasonal cooking,” according to an Olive Garden news release. “From there, guests will enjoy cultural excursions to the ancient Coliseum in Rome, a visit to the Sistine Chapel in Vatican City and a chance for the ultimate photo opportunity at the leaning Tower of Pisa. Guests will also taste Tuscan wine, sample Italian Gelato and learn to prepare regional cuisine.”

Olive Garden is selling 22,000 Never Ending Pasta Passes and 50 Pasta Passports to Italy.

The passes go on sale Thursday at 2 p.m. EST at PastaPass.com. They will be available for purchase for 30 minutes only, or until all passes and passports sell out. 

“Every year, through our Pasta Pass sale, we get to connect with and delight thousands of our most passionate Olive Garden fans,” said Jennifer Arguello, executive vice president of marketing for Olive Garden. “We couldn't think of a better way to create even more memories and a deeper connection to our brand than through a special edition Pasta Pass that includes an all-inclusive trip for two to the country that inspires us.

Learn more here.

According to Eater, 21,000 pasta passes were sold out in less than one second during Olive Garden’s promotion last year.

Hurricane Irma damage in Daytona Beach: Tourist favorite meets Atlantic's largest storm

Volusia County, Florida, residents on Monday morning awoke to toppled trees, downed power lines, flooded streets and damaged property.

>> Watch the news report here

Hurricane Irma brought howling winds and pounding rains to the county.

>> On WFTV.com: PHOTOS: Hurricane Irma damage in Volusia County

Officials urged residents to ascend to the highest floor of their homes. But for some, the rising water became too dangerous.

>> More Hurricane Irma coverage from WFTVAction News Jax and the Palm Beach Post

The Daytona Beach Fire Department said it had to evacuate people from flooded apartments along Beach Street.

The Volusia County Sheriff's Office said deputies rescued 14 people from the floodwaters.

>> Hurricane Irma damage: How to stay safe from tree, water damage in your home

The residents were taken to the city's Midtown Cultural and Education Center. No injuries were reported.

Elsewhere in the city, iconic attractions weren't spared from Irma's wrath.

>> PHOTOS: Hurricane Irma makes landfall in Florida, leaves damage behind

A large water slide at Daytona Lagoon, a popular water and amusement park, blew into an adjacent street.

Storm surge washed away beaches and left a Ponce Inlet boardwalk in ruins.

>> Read more trending news

The Daytona Beach Police Department said officers arrested a trio of burglars who were raiding a store.

Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood said that he has no tolerance for looting. He said that the county would be under curfew from 10 p.m. Monday to 6 a.m. Tuesday.

>> Irma: Live updates

Daytona Beach firefighters housed at Station 1 said the kitchen ceiling caved in. They said the bays harboring the fire trucks were so heavily flooded that the vehicles had to be moved to prevent damage.

>> Watch Volusia County deputies rescue Hurricane Irma victims

Hurricane Irma: Man braves waves to snap photos at Key West's Southernmost Point, instantly regrets it

If a hurricane is barreling toward you, it's obviously not the best time to visit a tourist attraction and take some photos.

>> Hurricane Irma: Live updates

But one man in Key West was caught on camera doing just that as Hurricane Irma approached.

>> Visit PalmBeachPost.com for more Hurricane Irma coverage

According to ABC News, a livestream at the Southernmost Point Buoy captured video of a man snapping pictures of the landmark as waves crashed around him – and then into him, soaking him and knocking him to the ground.

>> Watch the video here

Apparently, he wasn't the only one braving the surging waters. Other videos and screenshots purportedly from the same livestream circulated on social media.

>> Read more trending news

Although the stream has gone down, part of Saturday's footage has been posted on YouTube.

>> Check it out here

– News965.com and Rare.us contributed to this report.

Delta flight from Puerto Rico flies through narrow path of safety amid Hurricane Irma

A Delta Air Lines flight out of San Juan, Puerto Rico weaved its way through a swath of calm air around Hurricane Irma to take passengers to New York on Wednesday afternoon.

>> Read more trending news

The plane took off from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport Wednesday morning bound for San Juan.

The 180-seat Boeing 737-900 landed in San Juan without incident, according to Delta spokesman Michael Thomas. The winds were below the operating limits for the 737-900 to safely operate, according to Thomas.

The flight quickly unloaded passengers and took on a new planeful of passengers to take to New York.

It was Delta’s last scheduled flight from San Juan on Wednesday.

The airline’s meteorologists “took a hard look at the weather data and the track of the storm and worked with the flight crew and dispatcher to agree it was safe to operate the flight,” according to Delta’s vice president of operations, Erik Snell. He added that flight and ground crews “were incredible in their effort to turn the aircraft quickly and safely so the flight could depart well before the hurricane threat.”

Delta plans to delay its flights this evening in San Juan, then assess facilities after the storm passes to determine when it can restart flights.

Here’s a series of tweets by self-proclaimed aviation geek Jason Rabinowitz watching the flight into the storm from afar.

JetBlue offering $99 flights for people evacuating Hurricane Irma

JetBlue is offering discounted flights for people evacuating the path of Hurricane Irma.

>> Read more trending news 

Remaining seats on flights leaving the following airports have been reduced to $99 plus government taxes and fees:

  • SAV - Savannah, Georgia 
  • CHS - Charleston, South Carolina
  • PAP - Port-au-Prince, Haiti
  • PLS - Turks and Caicos
  • POP - Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic
  • SDQ - Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
  • PUJ - Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
  • STI - Santiago de los Caballeros, Dominican Republic
  • LRM - La Romana, Dominican Republic
  • HAV - Havana, Cuba
  • SNU - Santa Clara, Cuba
  • CMW - Camaguey, Cuba
  • HOG - Holguin, Cuba
  • NAS - Nassau, Bahamas

 

A JetBlue representative told Yahoo News the airline will charge a maximum of $99 up to the last available seat for direct flights and a maximum of $159 up to the last available seat for connecting flights.

>> Related: Hurricane Irma: Live updates 

The airline has also canceled 130 flights scheduled to leave the area during the peak of Irma’s impact.

Customers with existing flight reservations who cancel or change their trips will not be charged fees, the airline said.

American Airlines began offering pre-tax fares at $99 for MainCabin seats on direct, single leg flights out of Florida for tickets sold through Sunday for travel until Sept. 13.

Delta is capping fares at $399 on flights out of Florida and impacted islands, according to Yahoo.

Read more at Yahoo.

Brianna Chambers contributed to this report.

Delta, Southwest cancel flights due to Hurricane Irma

Delta Air Lines is canceling flights that had been scheduled for Wednesday in St. Thomas as it prepares for Hurricane Irma to pass through the Caribbean.

>> Read more trending news

Delta said it will also delay its evening flights in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and is planning to assess facilities after the storm passes.

Delta said its team of meteorologists expect the storm to begin curving north late Saturday afternoon, passing between Cuba and the Bahamas toward the southern tip of Florida. The airline said its strategic planners are working with employees at airports along the storm’s path.

Southwest Airlines is canceling flights to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic and San Juan on Wednesday and Thursday.

Southwest is also canceling flights scheduled for Friday and Saturday to Nassau and Havana.

Airport officials are advising travelers to monitor their airline’s communications channels.

Delta and Southwest are both allowing travelers to change their travel plans without paying certain charges.

Pittsburgh Int'l Airport becomes first to allow access to shops for non-ticketed visitors

Non-ticketed visitors will have access to Pittsburgh International Airport’s gates, shops and restaurants starting Tuesday.

>> Read more trending news 

The “myPITpass” program, which was announced in late August, makes Pittsburgh the first airport in the country to allow such access since 9/11.

The TSA pilot program will allow guests beyond the security checkpoint for shopping, dining and greeting passengers year-round from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, with the possibility of additional hours and weekend days in coming months.

Security will not change, even for people with a myPITpass. Just like ticketed passengers, people with the one-day pass will still have to go through security and have their name vetted against the No Fly list.

The Association of Professional Flight Attendants objects to the program.

“This is an ill-conceived relaxation of security requirements and a dangerous precedent. We shouldn't be letting our guard down,” APFA president Bob Ross said in a statement. “Airports are not shopping malls. They are travel hubs, where security must always be the top priority.”

APFA is also concerned that having shoppers in TSA security lines will lead to flight delays and more ticketed passengers missing flights.

WOW, $69 flights to Europe? Yes, please.

Have you been craving an authentic Guinness from Dublin? Perhaps a flawless Eiffel Tower selfie in romantic Paris?

If Europe has been on your bucket list, there’s never been a more perfect time to go.

>> Read more trending news 

WOW, an Icelandic low-cost airline, announced flights from Miami International Airport to eight European cities for as low as $69 each way. 

>> Related: Low-cost airline considers replacing seats with standing space

From September to November, you can travel to Berlin; Brussels; Copenhagen, Denmark; Dublin; Edinburgh, Scotland; London; Paris and Stockholm.

A screenshot of WOW Air's website from the morning of Aug. 29, 2017 showed $69 one-way fares from the USA to select European cities.

>> Related: American Airlines to decrease legroom for passengers

However, keep in mind, the flights are not direct and will include a layover at WOW's home base in Reykjavik, Iceland.

"Our mission is to enable everybody to fly and I think with these incredible prices we are making that dream a reality," Skuli Mogensen, the founder and CEO of WOW, said in a statement.

The $69 one-way fares, which include the ticket, taxes and a personal item of up to 22 pounds, must be booked for a round trip. The sale also includes flights from Boston, Washington D.C., Pittsburgh, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Don’t second-guess yourself, check out the deals here: https://wowair.us

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