Flights cancelled or diverted after plane comes off runway at Bristol Airport

A plane coming off the runway at Bristol Airport has caused travel disruption for thousands of people embarking on the Christmas getaway.

File image.

Twenty-five people were on board the BMI flight from Frankfurt when it left the runway as it was taxiing to the terminal shortly after 11.30am today.

No-one was injured and passengers were taken to the terminal building by coach.

The Air Accidents Investigation Branch dispatched a team of inspectors to investigate the incident which caused the closure of the runway on one of the busiest travel days of the year.

At least 60 flights were cancelled or diverted while specialist equipment was brought in to remove the Embraer 145 jet.

Even when the runway reopens it will be some time before schedules return to normal as many aircraft are out of position.

Affected passengers could struggle to make it to their loved ones for Christmas Day as there are few spare seats on many flights over the festive period.

An airport spokesman said: "The runway remains closed whilst the aircraft is towed to an aircraft stand before flights can resume.

"While it is too early to speculate about the cause of the incident, we are confident that it was not related to the low visibility conditions experienced.

"Additional staff are on hand in the terminal to assist passengers.

"We’re sorry for the disruption and flight cancellations experienced and fully appreciate it is frustrating."

More than 190,000 people are due to travel through Bristol Airport between Friday and January 1, up 5% on the same two-week period 12 months ago.

It serves more than 120 destinations with carriers including easyJet, Ryanair and KLM.

Michael Harrison, 27, was scheduled to land at Bristol before the pilot announced mid-air they were being diverted to East Midlands Airport - around 140 miles away.

The bar worker, who was coming back from a holiday in Krakow, Poland, told the Press Association: "I’m standing around now with very little direction.

"Apparently buses are coming to take us to Bristol, but that’s going to take me another three hours at least.

"I probably made a mistake going on an all-nighter last night."

Dave Joyce, who was due to fly to Javea, Spain, with his family, said his plane was diverted away from the airport.

The 53-year-old finance worker said: "Nothing’s moving at the minute and we haven’t had any information at all.

"People keep coming but nobody’s leaving, so it’s all getting pretty crowded just now.

"We’ve got seats in a restaurant, so we’re OK, but my wife’s mother is in a wheelchair."

Mr Joyce added: "A great start to the Christmas break ... Javea seems a long way away now."


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