American Airlines international flight turns around after passenger refuses to comply with mask requirement

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An American Airlines flight was forced to turn around on Wednesday after a passenger refused to comply with the federal mask requirement.

The flight was in-air headed to London Heathrow Airport from Miami International Airport when it was forced to turn around and land back in Miami.

An American Airlines spokesperson said that local law enforcement met the aircraft when it landed in Miami.

"American Airlines flight 38 with service from Miami (MIA) to London (LHR) returned to MIA due to a disruptive customer refusing to comply with the federal mask requirement. The flight landed safely at MIA where local law enforcement met the aircraft. We thank our crew for their professionalism and apologize to our customers for the inconvenience," an American Airlines spokesperson said.

FAA SAYS UNRULY AIRLINE PASSENGER REPORTS DOWN 50% SO FAR IN 2022

An American Airlines Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner approaches for a landing at the Miami International Airport on December 10, 2021 in Miami, Florida. An American Airlines flight was forced to turn around on Wednesday after a passenger refused to comply wi (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images / Getty Images)

The spokesperson added that the customer involved in the incident has been placed on the American Airlines "internal refuse list pending further investigation."

American Airlines flight 38 carried 129 passengers and 14 crew members, and was operated on a Boeing 777.

FAA SAYS NEARLY 6,000 UNRULY AIRLINE PASSENGERS REPORTED IN 2021

FILE – In this July 21, 2021 photo, American Airlines passenger jets prepare for departure near a terminal at Boston Logan International Airport, in Boston. 

In the first two weeks of 2022, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) saw a 50% decrease in unruly airline passenger reports after reaching record highs in the same time period in 2021, according to the government agency. 

The FAA has received 76 reports of unruly passenger behavior as of Jan. 14, with about 43 of those reports being mask-related incidents.

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FILE – In this July 17, 2019 file photo American Airlines planes are parked on the tarmac at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin / AP Newsroom)

In 221, the FAA received nearly 6,000 reports of unruly passengers from airlines, and launched 1,081 passenger behavior investigations.

Fox News' Daniella Genovese contributed to this report

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