Jack Makin and his wife Laura Story-Makin had been headed to Malta to celebrate their five-year anniversary but the couple got stuck in a five hour queue
Image: Jack Makin)
Passengers have collapsed and children were reportedly forced to ‘urinate in plastic bags’ amid five hour long queues at Manchester Airport.
The airport has been plagued by chaos in the past few weeks, due to staffing shortages, that have seen huge queues, abandoned baggage and passenger chaos at the airport just as many Brits hoped to escape for their holidays.
Now, one man has described the “mayhem” he experienced when trying to fly out of the airport, Manchester Evening News reported.
He said huge five hour long queues forced children to “urinate in plastic bags” and some passengers even collapsed.
Jack Makin, 32, and his wife Laura Story-Makin, also 32, arrived at the airport three-and-a-half hours prior to their flight to Malta.
However, it took them five “intense” hours to get from check-in to the boarding gate.
During his efforts to simply get to his flight, he saw one child sick “from dehydration and exhaustion” in the “horrendous” queues for security.
Mr Makin slammed it as the “worst experience” he’s ever had at an airport.
Since, Manchester Airport has apologized to any passengers who had an “unsatisfactory” experience on April 1, the day he tried to fly out.
The 32-year-old from Winsford, Cheshire, got to the airport at around 4:30pm with his wife.
The pair had booked fast-track security passes and hoped to grab some time to enjoy some food and drink before they jetted off to celebrate their five-year anniversary.
But the couple said they wished they “hadn’t bothered”.
Jack said: “We were flying out of Terminal 3 but had to go through Terminal 1 to their security, and then across the Terminal 3 to fly as Terminal 3 didn’t have the staff to open security there.
“So we had two terminals worth of people going through one security area.
“It was mayhem. There was about five staff manning the whole thing and handing out trays for luggage.
“A family in front of us had a child who started being sick due to dehydration and heat exhaustion.
“Kids were having to pee in the plastic bags that you’d usually put liquids in. It was horrific.”
Jack added that it “got heated at times” as some holidaymakers “were pushing in” the queues and he admitted he “felt bad” for the staff who were trying to manage the chaos.
Manchester Evening News)
Despite getting in around 4.30pm, they were still queuing to get their bags through security at 8:15pm, ten minutes after their flight was due to take off.
By 9pm their bags had finally gone through the conveyor belt to be scanned, but there were then hit with further delays as their luggage had to be checked by a member of staff.
“I said to Laura we should just give up and go home a few times because it was past the time for our flight and we’d obviously missed it.” Jack said.
He added: “After asking anyone who worked there if our flight had gone, no-one could answer us.
“We had to risk it all in the hopes our pilot hadn’t danced on us after an intense five-hour battle.”
The couple were left exhausted by their “hellish ordeal” but “could have cried” when they got to their gate and saw the Ryanair flight still on the tarmac.
He added: “Trust me when I say this was the worst experience I’ve ever had at an airport, and I’ve traveled quite a lot. One of the staff members said to me he’s never seen it this bad before, honestly it was horrible.”
Manchester Evening News)
As if that wasn’t bad enough, their flight, which took around 11:15pm, was plagued by issues like a woman collapsed through the toilet door, and an elderly man also “dropped to the floor” a short time later.
In a statement, for Manchester Airport, a spokesperson said: “We apologize to passengers whose experience on the evening of Friday 1st April was unsatisfactory.
“Our industry is facing staff shortages and recruitment challenges at present after the most damaging two years in its history.
“On some occasions, including on the evening in question, this led to delays in passing through security, as well as other parts of the passenger journey that are managed by airlines and third parties, such as check-in and baggage reclaim.
“Wherever possible, our security staff prioritized passengers within queues, with the aim of ensuring that they did not miss their flights. We also have a special assistance service available for passengers who are less mobile and those who cannot stand for long periods, which can be pre-booked through their airline.
“We have launched one of our largest-ever recruitment drives and hundreds of new security staff are in the process of being vetted and trained. Unfortunately though, this is not a quick process, and at times in the coming weeks, we do expect wait times in security to be up to 90 minutes.
“As such we are asking passengers to arrive at the airport three hours in advance and to double-check their hand luggage complies with security rules before arriving, as any additional screening of bags will add to wait times. If passengers do this, we are confident that we will be able to get them away on their travels.”