By Kevin Murphy
(Reuters) – A scorpion stung a passenger on an Alaska Airlines flight to Portland, Oregon, delaying a flight that originated in Mexico, the carrier said on Sunday.
Flight 567, which originated in Los Cabos, Mexico, was taxiing for takeoff on Saturday at Los Angeles International Airport when the woman was stung, airline spokesman Cole Cosgrove said.
The plane returned to the gate, where medics treated the woman and offered additional medical treatment, which she declined, Cosgrove said. She did not get back on the plane, he said. Passengers stayed on board, he said.
The woman brushed the scorpion away after the sting and killed it on the floor with her foot, Cosgrove said. The crew of the Boeing 737 checked for other scorpions and the plane departed about 50 minutes late, he said.
“We don’t know exactly how the scorpion made it on the plane, but the flight did originate in Los Cabos, Mexico, where scorpions are known to live,” Cosgrove said.
The airline was reaching out to the woman on Sunday regarding possible compensation for her inconvenience and to check on her condition, Cosgrove said.
Only about 30 of about 1,500 species of scorpions can cause potentially fatal stings, according the website of the Mayo Clinic.
“Scorpion stings, although painful, are mostly harmless,” a clinic posting said.
(Reporting by Kevin Murphy in Kansas City; Editing by Nick Zieminski and Eric Walsh)