A fistfight, a joking threat and maintenance issues were all apparent causes for go! Airlines interisland flight-delay problems for the last several days.
Passengers complained that over the weekend they experienced delays of up to five hours at both the Kahului and Honolulu International airports. A state airport officials received reports of the airline's delays at Kahului Airport beginning on Friday and also on Monday.
Chris Pappaioanou, a go! vice president and attorney for the Mesa Air Group Inc., the parent company of go!, said Tuesday that a fistfight while a plane was boarding on Oahu and a possible threat made at a ticket counter also on Oahu "caused some rolling delays," although he couldn't say to what extent.
The Associated Press reported that the small airline experienced cancellations and delays after three of its five aircraft had maintenance issues.
Pappaioanou said Tuesday morning that he only knew of the criminal incidents and needed to check with Mesa Air Group Inc. Chief Executive Officer Jonathan Ornstein on the other possible reasons for the delays.
Ornstein, whose assistant said he was in meetings all day, did not respond to a message seeking comment Tuesday.
But Ornstein told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser that it was a difficult weekend for the airline and that it would resume at full capacity on Tuesday.
Airport officials said there were go! airplanes on Maui on Tuesday. Whether flights were still badly delayed was unknown Tuesday night.
State Department of Public Safety spokeswoman Toni Schwartz said the fistfight occurred on Sunday on an aircraft leaving Oahu for the Big Island.
She said 34-year-old Brandon Kealoha from the Big Island was arrested for misdemeanor third-degree assault after he hit a man in the face several times.
She said the victim is a mixed-martial arts fighter who suffered cuts and bruises to his face.
The flight had not left yet when the fight occurred, Schwartz said.
On Monday, an Italian military policeman was arrested by sheriff's deputies when a go! Airline employee filed a complaint after hearing the man saying to a group he was traveling with that "I don't have any bombs," or "something along those lines," Schwartz said.
Schwartz said the man apparently made the comment as the agent asked if anyone had hazardous materials in their luggage and the man "in a light manner" made the statement to the group he was with.
The man was released on $200 bail. He was arrested on suspicion of misdemeanor second-degree terroristic threatening. An investigation is ongoing, Schwartz said. Explosive detecting dogs did not find anything suspicious in the group's luggage, she added.
Wailea resident Ryan Anderson said he will not fly go! again, noting that employees were rude and not letting passengers know what was going on while he waited for several hours at Kahului Airport on Saturday to catch a flight to Oahu.
"Everyone was just pissed off," he said of the passengers waiting at the airport as well as those that came off of go! flights.
Anderson said he has recently been flying to Oahu frequently because his fiancee is under doctor's care on Oahu while she is pregnant with twins. He said his fiancee cannot be left alone because of her fragile condition.
Instead of being on Oahu at 4:30 p.m. Saturday, he reached there around 9 p.m. But he said that was only because he was able to get on an earlier flight after explaining to an agent about his fiancee's situation.
He and other passengers said they did not get meal vouchers when they asked, but noticed that some other passengers did receive meal vouchers.
* Melissa Tanji can be reached at email@example.com.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.