A Southwest Airlines pilot’s recorded rant about Bay Area residents quickly went viral online this week, with the pilot at one point calling those who live in San Francisco “goddamn liberal f—s.”
A Southwest spokesman confirmed to The Hill Thursday night that the audio was captured on one of the company’s flights and that pilot worked for Southwest.
The spokesman added that the company was “fully addressing the situation internally.”
The remarks, which were picked up over the Mineta San Jose International Airport’s air traffic control scanner, occurred on a March 12 flight and were posted on Live ATC, which livestreams air traffic control audio transmissions.
The pilot, who Southwest has not publicly identified by name, can be heard in the recording beginning to complain about San Francisco residents amid directions from air traffic controllers on weather and runway conditions.
“F— this place, goddamn liberal f—s,” he said, before he was interrupted by an air traffic professional.
He later continues his rant, saying, “F—ing weirdos, probably driving around in f—ing Hyundais, f—ing roads and shit that go slow as f—.”
“You don’t have balls unless you’re f—ing rolling coal, man, goddamn it,” he added.
A call for Southwest Airlines 531 could be heard in the recording during the time of the rant.
Southwest told The Hill that the outburst was an “isolated incident involving a single employee and not representative of the nearly 60,000 hardworking, respectful people of Southwest Airlines.”
“Our corporate culture is built on a tenet of treating others with concern and dignity and the comments are inconsistent with the professional behavior and overall respect that we require from our employees,” the statement added.
Federal Aviation Administration spokesperson Ian Gregor wrote in a statement Wednesday to SFGATE that “FAA regulations prohibit airline pilots from talking about subjects that are unrelated to safely conducting their flight while taxiing and while flying below 10,000 feet altitude.”
Updated 10:39 p.m.