11/27/2013 02:22 pm ET

The 10 Most Absurd Flight Delays To Ever Happen

David McNew via Getty Images

Think your Thanksgiving plane delay is funny?

Wait till you hear these crazy excuses for tardy takeoff.

Bill Clinton's scalp
In 1993, four LAX runways shut down when then-president Bill Clinton summoned his hair stylist aboard Air Force One for a last-minute trim on the tarmac. Apparently, he hadn't had time to make it to the stylist's Beverly Hills salon during his stay.

Six-foot iguanas
In Puerto Rico, a strange, nonnative iguana species has begun to overrun the island, setting up camp everywhere from patios to hotel pools. The real doozy comes when they swarm the runways, causing delays at San Juan International Airport.

A man in a flying lawn chair
As far as we can tell, this really, truly happened. In 1982, Larry Walters attached 45 industrial weather balloons to a lawn chair for a casual flight above his backyard. Things got a little out of hand, and he was arrested after floating into LAX airspace at 16,000 feet. A Pan Am flight changed its course.

An icy blast of fire ants
A veteran flight attendant claims that one time, attendants on a flight from Mexico City started the plane's air conditioning after sitting at the gate for awhile. Ants had somehow snuggled into the vents during that time, so when the air went on, hundreds of the buggers sprayed into the cabin. Ick!

Overage pilots
Officials at Heathrow forbid a Polish Airlines flight to take off after finding out that both its pilots were over the age of 60. According to regulations over there, one pilot on each flight must be under 60 years old.

A cockroach infestation
Two years ago, crew members in Miami found more than 50 cockroaches colonizing "a curtain between first class and the pilots." One passenger recalls remaining curled in her seat during the two-hour delay.

Bees, fire, and a coyote
Poor Charlotte Douglas Airport was dealt an especially rough day this summer. In a single afternoon, flights were delayed due to a swarm of bees around the plane, a small fire on a moving walkway, and a wandering coyote on the property.

A kitty in the cockpit
Last year, a 10-year-old cat named Ripples went missing on a flight from Halifax to Toronto, where he had been seated with his owner. After a fruitless search, attendants finally found him in the cockpit. Ripples wouldn't come out of the electronics area, so they had to disassemble it from behind, delaying the plane for four hours.

A prayer box
Bomb squads visited Philadelphia in 2010 after an emergency landing prompted by an innocent teenager's prayer box. The 17-year-old Jewish passenger was toting a Tefillin, "a set of small black boxes containing biblical passages that are attached to leather straps."

Royal horses
Six fancy horses owned by a Saudi Arabian prince "became agitated" in the cargo hold at an Egypt airport. Passengers waited for over an hour while a vet tranquilized their royal plane-mates.



Crazy Causes For Flight Diversions