Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.

Pilot buys pizza for 160 passengers stranded on US flight

Gerhard Brandner would not say how much the giant takeaway cost him

Most stranded air passengers can hope for an airport meal voucher at best to sustain them through a delay.

But a US pilot who took pity on travellers during a storm bought pizza for the entire plane.

The Frontier Airlines flight was heading from Washington to Denver, when it was diverted to Wyoming on Monday.

The manager of the nearest Domino’s Pizza, in Cheyenne, said he got a call when he was about to close at 10pm.

Andrew Richie said the pilot told him he needed to feed 160 people, and fast.

About 50 pizzas were promptly delivered to the airport and flight attendants handed slices out to the hungry passengers.

The pilot, Gerhard Brandner, would not tell KUSA TV how much it cost him.

“Of course if the need arises, you need to take care of your passengers,” he said.

“They are my responsibility from the moment they step on the aircraft to the moment they get off.”

Mr Brandner was flying as the story went viral and colleagues had given him the nickname “pizza guy”, KUSA reported.

The plane was allowed to take off and continue its journey shortly after the pizzas arrived at around 10.30pm.

Additional reporting by AP