Manchester Airport baggage delay causes 'chaos'

Image caption,
Many passenger had to wait hours for their luggage

Passengers arriving at Manchester Airport have complained of "horrendous" delays of three hours as they tried to collect their baggage.

Joao Correia, who landed at Terminal 3 on Friday night, said it was "chaotic".

The airport has apologised, while Ryanair said a fire alarm evacuation had "stretched" the overnight Swissport handling staff, which led to the delay.

A Swissport spokeswoman said the firm realised the delays were "frustrating to passengers".

"We always work closely with our airline and airport partners to mitigate the impact of these schedule disruptions to passengers, but we understand these delays were frustrating to passengers during this busy bank holiday period," she said.

Anger vented

Eight flights were delayed after an evacuation of Terminal 3 following the alarm "because of the need to rescreen through airport security all affected passengers and their checked-in luggage," a Ryanair spokesman said.

He said its impact on Swissport staff overnight "led to further delays in the delivery of the baggage into the arrivals hall when these delayed flights returned to Manchester".

Mr Correia said: "There was no information whatsoever about the cause or any particular solution.

"We were a party of six with two young children and we couldn't wait indefinitely without any prospect of getting our luggage back so we decided to head home to Birmingham and try and sort it the day after."

He said he had been ringing Swissport and Manchester Airport "since 9am this morning and no-one picks up the phone".

BBC Sport broadcaster Shabnam Younus Jewell, who was heading back from a holiday, tweeted that some people were venting their anger at a Ryanair crew member.

'Complete joke'

Others waiting to collect passengers complained on social media, with one taxi driver describing the airport as "a complete joke".

A father waiting to collect his daughter tweeted that the service was "horrendous" with "no baggage coming through, no staff to ask, no information available".

The airport and Swissport are conducting an investigation.

A Ryanair spokesman said: "We are awaiting Swissport's reports to ensure that it does not recur.

"We apologise sincerely to any passengers who were inconvenienced by this delayed delivery of baggage, which was caused by the fire alarm/evacuation of the terminal building last evening."

A Manchester Airport spokesman said: "We'd like to apologise for any inconvenience caused to passengers."

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