A woman on board flight LS542, which had to make an unscheduled landing in Portugal because of a “disruptive passenger”, claims she was visibly drunk and should not have been allowed on board
Image: Getty Images)
A passenger claims two Jet2 passengers were seen “rolling around the airport pouring vodka into bottles of water” before boarding a disaster plane that was forced to land in Portugal.
Violet Wilkinson, 65, had just been enjoying a sunny holiday in Gran Canaria when her Jet2 flight was diverted from its destination Newcastle to Porto on Sunday evening.
She says she felt trapped in limbo after her flight was forced to land 1,100 miles from home and she was stuck for 24 hours.
Flight number LS542, which took off at 21:30 on Sunday, was due to arrive in Newcastle around 2:00 on Monday.
However, the flight was diverted due to the airline’s “zero tolerance” approach to disruptive passengers.
Violet, from Newcastle, describes being left in ‘no man’s land’ after taking off and being stuck at the airport overnight with no one being told what had happened.
After being stuck at the airport until 7am local time on Monday, she said passengers were taken to a hotel 45 minutes away to freshen up before returning around 9:30pm for a new flight.
She said she only landed in Newcastle after midnight on Tuesday.
Violet told The Mirror she heard from other passengers who saw the two men at the Spanish airport before boarding the plane.
She claimed: “I heard from other passengers that they appeared to be drunk.
“A lot of people said they weren’t allowed to board the plane because other passengers saw them rolling around on the floor in the airport bar and pouring their vodka into water bottles.”
Bloomberg via Getty Images)
“This whole thing has a knock-on effect on people who should be back to work, children who should be in school. It is unfair that there must be something else.”
She said two passengers behind her got into an altercation and the stewards tried to separate them with the drinks trolley as they sat opposite each other.
She says they were taken to the back of the plane but were forced to transfer when things didn’t calm down.
Violet said they were airborne for about an hour trying to find a place to land and eventually made it to Porto.
She thought they would take off just after police had escorted the men off the plane, but because crew shifts were over and Newcastle Airport would be closed by the time they got there, they had to disembark.
Violet said: “It was a bit like the movie Terminal – we were in limbo… we couldn’t get our luggage – they left it on the plane.
“We couldn’t go through passport control and we had no water, there was no place to sit, people were sitting on the floor and others were standing
“The children were crying. There was nothing – no refreshments.”
She added: “We were in this waiting area until about 7am and then we finally walked through, got our bags and went through passport control.
“We were just led one behind the other like a flock of sheep and taken to an underground car park where the coaches were parked.”
She says they were driven to a five-star hotel about 45 minutes away, where everyone was given a room and told they would be picked up again at 5:30 p.m. and taken to the airport.
Violet feels that she and her fellow passengers have been left in the dark by the airline.
She said: “I felt that we were being punished and the actual perpetrators were not. They would have been taken to the station and given a pillow, food and a cell. That was really unfair.”
She also says airports need to do something for passengers who find themselves in this situation when a flight is disrupted.
She added: “The airports have done nothing to assist the situation for the people left on the vehicle.
“They have a room with sofas or small beds for children and some water and juice and snacks. We felt like aliens, which we were.”
A Jet2 spokesman said: “We can confirm that flight LS542 from Gran Canaria to Newcastle was diverted to Porto this morning to allow a disruptive passenger to be offloaded.
“As a family-friendly airline, we have a zero-tolerance approach to disruptive behavior. We will not hesitate to vigorously pursue the resulting costs.”
https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/drunk-jet2-passengers-rolling-around-26991418 'Drunk' Jet2 passengers 'roll over and pour vodka into bottled water' before flight