Moment furious Brits climb through baggage carousel to find lost luggage as armed cops are called amid travel chaos
THIS is the moment furious passengers climbed through a baggage carousel curtain to get their luggage – before armed cops were called to the terminal.
There were chaotic scenes at Manchester Airport as angry holiday-makers returning from trips abroad took matters into their own hands.
Police were then called to the airport as the travellers stormed the carousel to fetch baggage abandoned before it reached the building.
One passenger, who flew back with Ryanair from Portugal on Monday, told the Manchester Evening News there were three-and-a-half hour delays to reclaim suitcases.
The 36-year-old, who lives in Oldham, said customers offered to load luggage themselves before officers arrived at the scene.
“Passengers got annoyed because they couldn’t get any answers,” she said.
“People were climbing and crawling through the curtain on the carousel belt trying to find their own luggage.
“The bags were there, but there was no one to put them onto the carousel.
“I don’t think that anyone got their bags, but I don’t know, and the police came armed.
“They were closing shutters and walking around making the point.
“People were just trying to get their own bags back. The carousel belts weren’t moving and no one was there to help us.”
She said “hundreds” of people were waiting in the baggage reclaim hall, and suitcases were lying abandoned on the floor.
“Some of it was dated from May 27 – it had been there for three days,” she added.
“The worst part was that you couldn’t get any answers.
“There was no one working in the area and no representatives. The only people that came were the police.”
As the customers waited, “more and more” people came in for their bags.
It comes as…
“At some point, one flight got their bags, but they had been waiting for three and a half hours,” she said.
“Bags from different flights were put on the same carousel – a different one than the one we were assigned – and eventually I got my bag.
“We were quite lucky. It was two-and-a-half hours.
“A lot of people were angry. People were offering to go and help put the bags on the carousel from behind to speed up the process.”
A spokesperson from Manchester Airport said: “Over the last few days Tui and its appointed ground handler, Swissport, have experienced significant challenges with their check-in and baggage reclaim operations at Manchester airport.
“From extensive discussions with the Tui and Swissport management teams, it is clear that they are experiencing temporary staff shortages, in common with other aviation and travel companies.
“Given these challenges, we understand Tui’s difficult decision to cancel a number of services over the course of the next month, although we are obviously disappointed to see passengers’ plans disrupted in this way.
“We will continue to work with Tui, Swissport and other partners to give passengers the best possible service as the travel sector builds back to full strength after the pandemic.”
Swissport said: “We are very sorry for our part in the disruption people are experiencing.
“We are working hard to address our resource challenges, with over 2,800 new hirings since the start of the year.
“We will continue to work with our partners to find solutions for this industry-wide issue.”
Sun Online has contacted Greater Manchester Police for comment.
Disruption at the airport continues today, with huge queues stretching out of the building and into the car park. Others claimed they faced a wait of almost two hours to get through security.
However, it’s not the only airport facing huge problems, with passengers blasting “carnage” during the half-term break.
Tui has slashed its flight schedule to tackle staff shortages and “ongoing disruption”. Some 34,000 people have had their hols cancelled.
Easyjet also announced it will cancel more than 200 flights from in total. Around 24 flights from Gatwick will be axed every day until June 6.
Planned walkouts could also disrupt British Airways services. Hundreds of staff are threatening to strike in a row over pay.
What are my rights?
Why are airports overrun?
Staff shortages are thought to lie at the heart of the crisis. Unions say thousands of airport workers were made redundant during the pandemic and not replaced.
When will it be resolved?
Airports insist they have been recruiting new staff but workers require training and security vetting before they are allowed to start, and that may take months.
How long are the delays?
Passengers are reporting queues of up to four hours at the worst-affected airports such as Manchester.
What should I do?
Airports advise passengers to continue arriving for their flights three hours in advance. They urge travellers not to arrive earlier amid fears it will add to overcrowding.
Can I get a refund if I miss my flight because of airport security queues?
Probably not. Which? says queues at security are the responsibility of the airport. No large UK airport has a policy to compensate travellers missing flights because of long security queues.
What about queues at the airline check-in desk?
If you have arrived at the airport at the time you were instructed and miss your flight because of check-in or bag drop queues you may be able to claim under the consumer rights act. This may involve a court case.
Can I claim if queues cause me to miss flight?
It depends on your travel insurance policy. To make a claim, it will be crucial to provide evidence you arrived at the time advised by the airport, or airline.
What if I’m about to miss a flight because of queues?
Let someone know. Most airports will bring you to the front of the queue if your flight is due to depart.
Denial of responsibility! galaxyconcerns is an automatic aggregator around the global media. All the content are available free on Internet. We have just arranged it in one platform for educational purpose only. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials on our website, please contact us by email – [email protected]. The content will be deleted within 24 hours.