Flight delayed after sugar glider escapes aboard plane

An Eastern Airlines flight from Shanghai to Jinan, China, was delayed after a sugar glider that was smuggled onto the flight by its owner escaped in the passenger compartment of the plane. Photo by andyround62/Pixabay.com

June 11 (UPI) -- A plane in China was delayed after a passenger's smuggled pet sugar glider, a type of small Australian possum, escaped in the passenger cabin.

Shanghai Police International Airport Branch said passengers on the Eastern Airlines flight to Jinan had to temporarily disembark when the animal, which resembles a flying squirrel, escaped from its owner in the passenger cabin and went into hiding.

Police wrote on social media that the animal's owner "violated the regulations and took a pet sugar glider on board the plane."

The sugar glider was eventually captured and removed from the plane, police said.

Passengers were allowed back on the plane, which arrived in Jinan 62 minutes behind schedule.

The sugar glider's owner was detained by police for "disrupting order on public transportation."