It’s not a great time to be United Airlines. Fresh off the back of that passenger incident earlier this month, it’s now emerged they’ve accidentally killed a prized rabbit on one of their flights.
The rabbit was called Simon, and was traveling from London Heathrow Airport to Chicago O’Hare (also the scene of the passenger incident). It was due to be bought by an unknown buyer in the US, with the rabbit expected to grow into the world’s biggest.
It’s not entirely clear how the rabbit was killed, but we do know it happened earlier today (Wednesday, April 26) at some point after take-off, with the rabbit in the cargo section.
“Something very strange has happened and I want to know what,” the rabbit’s breeder, Annette Edwards, told The Sun. “I’ve sent rabbits all around the world and nothing like this has happened before. The client who bought Simon is very famous. He’s upset.”
Simon, a continental giant rabbit, was 10 months old and 90 centimeters (3 feet) long. But his father was a rather large 1.32 meters (4 feet and 4 inches) in length, which was variously reported as the previous holder of the title of biggest rabbit, leading some to suspect Simon would eclipse his dad.
The New York Times reported that 35 animals died in transit across the United States on 17 airlines in 2015. United was responsible for 14 of those, out of the almost 100,000 it transported. United said they were now reviewing what happened to Simon.