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EasyJet passengers ‘bounced around like a washing machine’ during storm flight

Petrified easyJet passengers were left stranded in Birmingham after their flight from Lyon had to make a last-minute emergency diversion due to Storm Isha.

Aine Morris, 39, was travelling from Berlin to Bristol via a connecting flight from Lyon yesterday at 4pm local time.

Ms Morris, a well-versed flyer, knew Storm Isha was coming but thought she would swerve the disruption as the weather warning in place started shortly after her flight was supposed to land in Bristol at 6pm.

The global exports manager of tea brand Wilden Herbals says the flight passengers “bounced around in the air like a washing machine” as the pilot battled through intense turbulence.

They attempted to touch down in Bristol but at the last moment the pilot realised it was too dangerous and redirected them towards Birmingham Airport, where they became stuck on the plane for 4.5 hours.

She said: “We were being bounced around the air like a washing machine, people were getting very upset and there was a lady at the back of the plane being violently sick.

“We were blown from side to side and the pilot fought to stay in control. We were 10ft off the ground when he decided it was unsafe and he pulled the plane straight up into the air, it was awful. I’m not a religious person, but I was praying to my God to save me.”

Ms Morris applauded the pilot’s abilities and the cabin crew’s support, however, when the plane eventually landed at Birmingham airport, passengers were left confused and did not know whether they would secure transportation back to Bristol, says Ms Morris.

Aine Morris shared her journey from hell after being stuck for 4.5 hours on the plane after it was  diverted to Birmingham Airport (Provided)
Aine Morris shared her journey from hell after being stuck for 4.5 hours on the plane after it was diverted to Birmingham Airport (Provided)

Fortunately, onboard staff brought round a snacks trolley and Ms Morris enjoyed a dinner of Cadbury’s chocolate nibbly fingers.

Hours passed and eventually the passengers were taken to the gate where they waited apprehensively to hear if there would be coach transportation to take them back to Bristol at 10.45pm.

There was even some suggestion of arranging an alternative flight to Bristol, added Ms Morris.

“There were some vulnerable people, tourists who couldn’t speak English and a poor woman with three children who must have been about five, six and 18-months. She had been carrying her baby for hours and hours,” added Ms Morris.

The travellers discovered they did not have alternative travel arrangements provided by EasyJet and had to make their own way home.

Ms Morris joined a father and teenage son a Bath University student in a taxi back to Bristol, which cost £230 between them at 11.15pm.

She said: “It’s funny I have had a bit of a fear of flying especially being in the air with extreme weather events and when it unfolded I thought I’d be more terrified.”

Ms Morris said she responded to the crisis by planning and helping others arrange transportation home.

She eventually made it into bed at 3am where the whole ordeal hit her and she burst into tears.

“It’s an absolute disgrace, we are a leading European country, it’’s shocking and embarrassing our national infrastructure has reached a point where the government, airport and private travel companies are not taking responsibility for people.”

An EasyJet spokesperson said: “Storm Isha impacted all airlines’ operations across the UK on Sunday 21 January, resulting in some diversions and cancellations including flight EZY2786 from Lyon to Bristol which was required to divert to Birmingham. As the weather disruption meant airport arrivals were busier than usual, passengers were unfortunately delayed disembarking due to a delay in airport buses being available to take passengers from the aircraft to the terminal.

“We did all possible to minimise the impact of the delay, keeping customers updated onboard and once they had disembarked we arranged onward transport to Bristol and advised anyone who arranged their own that they will be reimbursed.

“The safety and wellbeing of our customers and crew is easyJet’s highest priority and while this was outside of our control we are very sorry for the inconvenience caused by the weather.”