'Nightmare': Woman's View From Plane Window Stuns Internet

An image of a "nightmare" of a view from the window of an aircraft has stunned users of Reddit, with several users offering a range of theories on its origins.

The image, posted by user Witheredspoon62 and titled "My wife's first trip on a plane and this was the view out her window," shows several cracks/scratches on the cabin window. The picture was shared in a post on the r/Wellthatsucks subreddit, where it garnered 20,000 comments at the time of writing.

User friendofspidey wrote: "Nightmare at 20,000 feet it seems."

Referencing the late 1980s horror film A Nightmare on Elm Street, user wrrld said: "On this episode of The Twilight Zone [the historic television series], we'll find out if the scratches are on the inside or the outside of the plane window. Was this OP's [original poster] wife's Nightmare at 20,000ft?

User adoptdontshopbro wrote: "Not a worse feeling than this. The best part is looking out the window. Was this completed with the sounds of a screaming baby? Lol," in a comment that got 150 upvotes.

One Redditor joked the marks were the wife's doing. User srv50 said: "You should have stopped her before she did all that. People do weird things when scared," in a comment that got 4,500 upvotes.

The original poster then replied: "She [my wife] doesn't appreciate being called out like that, but thankfully she didn't clap when we landed!," in a comment that got 2,100 upvotes.

User brucem10: noted: "That's called crazing. It's not graffiti. It's cracks in the plastic film on the outside of the window. Occurs naturally from flying at altitude. An airline isn't going to take an aircraft out of service for a non-safety factor reason. It will be addressed during the next aircraft letter check," in a comment that got 411 upvotes.

Aircraft windows are made of a form of plexiglass or acrylic plastics, which is a lightweight material that's relatively strong and you can see clearly through it.

"The glass is layered, and the middle layer usually has a tiny hole in it to get rid of condensation," according to a website of the National Air and Space Museum of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.

Crazing is described as "tightly spaced random cracks" that occur when water is applied to the surface of heated glass, according to the From Knowledge to Practice Fire Dynamics Curriculum, devised by Canada's Ottawa Fire Services, along with Calgary, Montreal and Halifax.

"As the temperature of glass is increased, the only type of breaking that is likely to be observed is explosive cracking, giving an appearance similar to a mechanical fracture with radial cracks. Typically, cracks or broken inner panes of a multi-pane window are readily evident," the curriculum explains.

Other Redditors offered more creative explanations for the origins of the strange marks on the window.

Andros7744 said: "Those are the marks left by the clouds demons trying to enter the aircraft to feast on passengers. Flight company probably forgot to replace the see-through shields after the last flight. Hopefully it will hold those horrors away for this trip as well," in a comment that got 1,400 upvotes.

User jefftatro1 said: "Looks like a window in a county jail," in a comment that received 1,300 upvotes.

A woman looking out of a plane
A woman looking out of a plane window. iStock/Getty Images Plus