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Inverness Airport blunder sees two plane-loads of passengers parted from their luggage

By Neil MacPhail

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Inverness Airport.
Inverness Airport.

PASSENGERS waiting for take off at Inverness Airport for a flight to Manchester were told by the captain as they sat on the runway: "Your luggage is going to Belfast."

It appears that baggage handlers loaded all the checked-in items for the Loganair flight to Manchester onto a Belfast City flight instead.

The captain of the Manchester flight last Monday was told of the error just before they took off, so he had to tell the passengers on the fully booked flight with 46 on board.

The mistake came to light when it was discovered all the Belfast bound luggage was still in Inverness after the Belfast plane was gone.

Katherine Macfarlane.
Katherine Macfarlane.

Inverness woman Katherine Macfarlane who was flying home to Stockport said: “The captain appeared in person in the cabin and said he had some bad news, and there was general groaning as we feared a delay.

"He was very apologetic and said that unfortunately everyone’s luggage was currently heading to Belfast.

"I had an Air Tag (tracker) in my case, so I saw that my bag was flown back to Inverness that night, then down to Manchester on the first early flight.

"One case to go missing can be expected, but questions need to be asked how a whole plane load of checked baggage can end up on the wrong flight.

"The passengers to Belfast wouldn't have been too happy either."

Her case arrived this afternoon. (Wed May 31)

A HIAL spokesperson said: “Unfortunately, on this occasion, passenger baggage was loaded onto the wrong aircraft. This is a very rare occurrence at Inverness Airport and we apologise to anyone who has been inconvenienced by the mistake.

“The airline’s baggage handling team moved quickly to resolve the issue and the luggage was redirected to the appropriate airport at the earliest opportunity.”

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