A group of disabled passengers were left stranded on a landed Jet2 plane at Manchester airport for 90 minutes without assistance following a mix up.
Emma Giddings had requested the help of the airport’s Omniserv service to escort her disabled daughter off the plane and through the airport but was left waiting on the tarmac for an hour and a half.
The Jet2 flight 766 from Madeira landed at 4pm on Monday with six passengers on board who had booked assistance with the Omniserv service at Manchester airport.
Manchester Airport where the Omniserv service is in place to provide help to less mobile passengers (stock)
Omniserv is an independent company contracted to provide prompt assistance to ‘passengers of reduced mobility’ at Manchester airport.
However Ms Giddings and her daughter, along with five elderly people, were not offered the help required until 5.30pm due to a mix up.
Cabin crew were unable to leave the passengers unattended meaning later Jet2 flights had to be delayed.
Mrs Giddings told The Independent: ‘I am truly disgusted with the delay and how we were treated.
‘We were left standing on the tarmac with no transport.
‘The communication between the driver of the vehicle and the OmniServ staff helping us was terrible.’
A Virgin Boeing 747 takes off from Manchester Airport (stock). The group finally made it through passport control two hours after their flight landed
When a vehicle did turn up to attend the group they were ‘abandoned in some kind of area with a lift’ without help again.
The group were then ‘found’ by a staff member who escorted them through passport control two hours after their flight had landed – meaning some missed their taxis and had to fork out for another.
A spokesperson for Omniserv said: ‘OmniServ endeavours to work closely with the airport, airlines and other service providers to ensure a seamless service to all passengers.
‘We apologised to the customer and are actively reviewing the situation to improve our processes and service.’
A Manchester Airport spokesman said: ‘We never like to hear our passengers have had a bad experience and always urge them to feedback any concerns to us directly.
‘We are currently investigating exactly what happened in this situation as a matter of urgency, with both the airline and our new special assistance provider, OmniServ.
‘Manchester Airport is committed to providing excellent service to all customers, including those who require special assistance and have invested heavily in this area in the last 12 months.
‘This includes setting up a dedicated airport Disability Engagement Forum, which has played an important role in developing our plan to improve performance.
‘Nevertheless, we never want passengers to have a bad airport experience and are sorry to hear the standards we expect of our partners were not met on this occasion. We have raised this directly with OmniServ and await the outcome of their investigation.’
Jet2 says the delay happened because the airport had been very busy that day.
A Jet2 spokesman said: ‘This is a service that is overseen and delivered by the airport and its providers.
‘However, our cabin crew did not leave the aircraft without ensuring that all customers had departed safely.
‘Unfortunately, the airport was particularly busy that day and so we understand there was a delay in disembarking those passengers requiring additional help.
‘We apologise if this has affected anyone travelling with us and we have engaged with the relevant parties to improve the service.’