View Full Version : Pilot bans drunken Old Firm fans

1st Oct 2001, 12:33
from news.bbc.co.uk

Drunken football fans have been forced to spend the night at Glasgow Airport after being banned from boarding a plane to Belfast.

More than 150 people spent the night at the airport, after the captain of the plane refused to allow them on board became of their drunken behaviour.

The supporters were making their way back to Northern Ireland following Sunday's Old Firm match at Ibrox.

Celtic opened up a seven point lead at the top of the Scottish Premier League with a 2-0 victory over their rivals.

The Easyjet flight had been due to take off at about 1830 BST, but was delayed because of a technical problem.

After some rowdiness the airport bars were closed, but by the time a replacement jet had arrived at 2300 BST there were angry scenes and police reinforcements had to be called in.

The captain of the flight refused to allow any of the passengers on board and left for Belfast with an empty plane.

A plane did take off shortly after 0200 BST on Monday with some of its passengers.

The rest of the group spent the night in the airport lounges or at local hotels.

A manager at the airport said it had been a volatile situation with airline and airport staff feeling threatened.

1st Oct 2001, 18:51
Excellent decision, IMHO.
However, is it not slightly rich of us as an industry to continually offer alcohol to our customers, knowing that we will not allow them to board the aircraft when drunk. Virtually all recorded acts of violence on-board are exacerbated by alcohol, often as a result of delays. Why do airports continue to serve people who are intoxicated, knowing that it is illegal to board an aircraft whilst in this state? The airlines are not without blame either, serving free alcohol once on the aircraft.
Why is it that the only place in the UK where you can buy alcohol at 0900 is at an airport???
Time we banned all alcohol from airside, I think. Think of the profits we will lose, but think also of the cost of diversions and incidents incurred as a result of our current policy.

SET 18
1st Oct 2001, 19:05
Sorry Hooperfly, but it sounds to me that you area fully paid-up member of the nanny state. Lets persecute the overwhelming majority because of the tiniest minority. How many aircraft got airborne yesterday without incident? I think that the decision taken yesterday was entirely appropriate given the scenario, but to inhibit everyone else's activities is just plain stupid.
It is opinions like yours that are going to stop fox hunting, don't allow anyone to drive at an appropriate speed for the given conditions and generally lower everyone's standards of living because of a misguided, but loudly promoted opinion.

John MacCalman
1st Oct 2001, 21:09
Look closely at the info behind this incident. My understanding was that the fans were due to take off at 1830 but the aircraft went tech. Therefore the fans who may not have been drunk at the scheduled time of the flight had nothing to do except but hang around the airport till a replacement aircraft could get there.

Football fan hanging around airport for delayed flight - where do you go - The Bar.

Now how do we stop this happening. Close the bars at airports?

Difficult issues for all concerned. Right call from the pilot though - you can't have drunks on board endangering a flight but it should be the gate agent who denies boarding in the first place without having to involve the pilot. Maybe this was the case?

Anybody at GLA with the inside scoop?

Al Titude
1st Oct 2001, 21:36
Drunk people not being allowed on flights...does this include BA Captains?!

Stands back and awaits barrage of truckie abuse...

[ 01 October 2001: Message edited by: Al Titude ]

southern softy
1st Oct 2001, 22:18
remove al and ude from above posters name and what do you get. and no I do not work for BA,(orange 73s for me) but we are all professionals within the industry, at these times we should all be sticking together not bringing in un related childish comments.

1st Oct 2001, 23:09
Yes Al, How could yuou say such things, I mean where's your proof. A documentry you say. Well I bet it was made by those bloody liberals at the BBC. :p

Scotflight Aviation
1st Oct 2001, 23:24
Well, whatever you guys disagree on, as long as we're all behind the EasyJ captain...good call. Banning alcohol though...nope, not a sensible answer, not just 'cos it's unfair to the well behaved ones who like a harmless drink while waiting for a delayed flight, but what about all those passengers who are nervous of flying. (Trust me on this one...there are plenty of 'em) Some just a tiny bit wary and some absolutely white-knuckle terrified. But for a lot of the scared ones, they find it too embarrassing or "un-macho" or something to admit to being scared, especially in front of their colleagues, so they cover up their fear by trying to behave "confident"...eventually losing control of their manners and mild temperament. A small drink before / during flight settles the nerves a bit. I reckon banning alcohol entirely will result in an increase in air-rage type incidents.
However, a football team should know better.
Nice one Easy Jet guys...keep up the good work.
PS...I hate football anyway !!

Scotflight Aviation
1st Oct 2001, 23:28
Having said all that, why do airports and airlines not display clear signs anywhere, such as at check-in desk / ticket / departure lounge / airport bar...the quotation from the ANO which says it's illegal to be drunk on an aircraft ? Wouldn't that help solve the problems and assist in staff when confronted by an argumentative pratt?

1st Oct 2001, 23:38
SET 18....................

"It is opinions like yours that are going to stop fox hunting, don't allow anyone to drive at an appropriate speed for the given conditions"

What's wrong with that?...sounds just fine to me (and the majority of the public).
Don't bother replying....this is an aviation forum. Suggest you go somewhere else with that sort of rubbish.

2nd Oct 2001, 02:12
Be honest guys do u believe that the majority of these fans didnt have a drop of alcohol til they got to the airport, nah.

At the end of the day its pilots decision and he made the right call so leave it at that.

What concerns me more is the fact that before Easy and Go started this route, Rangers and Celtic fans could only travel with one sea operator, (i.e.) Rangers - P and O, Celtic - Stena, looks like this hasnt been enforced by the 2 said airlines so that could and probably did lead to tension at the airport, it may be difficult to understand the rivalry between these 2 teams but if u went to one of the matches you would you would see how much they hate each other, I'm a Rangers man myself and I am still gutted we lost 2-0 and will be for another few days no doubt!!!!!!!!!

Pilot Pete
2nd Oct 2001, 02:43
Ah Deko,

shame mate, never mind its only a game and several hundred years of history!! Perhaps there's a niche for the old EAC using half the fleet in green and white and the other half in blue and white......it would only take 1 pot of green and 1 pot of blue to transform the old Cessna's!!



SET 18
2nd Oct 2001, 14:07

At the risk of prolonging any ill-feeling, you are making statements along the lines of the originator's point, i.e. if you don't agree with me then you are wrong and should not be tolerated. My comments along the lines of drivers' speed and fox-hunting were made in order to draw a parallel between the way some people (yourself obviously included) think and the way many, many others think. It was made with direct reference to an aviation topic and is, therefore, entirely appropriate and relevant.
Finally, as a fully-qualified professional pilot, I am perfectly entitled to voice my opinions here. What would you call for next under the banner of the so-called majority; surpression of free speech?

2nd Oct 2001, 15:08
Perhaps if Easy, Ryan, Go.....etc had a little check up on these group travel plans, they might learn a thing or two......like 80% of the airlines in Europe (Sched or Charter) will not take Rangers fans ob board. This is due to repeated displays of bad behaviour, abusing crew, and actually wrecking aircraft interiors.

Some things never change!! :rolleyes:

Eff Oh
2nd Oct 2001, 17:17
As a matter of fact, Scottish football fans repeatedly win the FIFA "Fair Play Award for Fans." I dont know of any airlines in the UK who will not carry Rangers or Celtic fans. Monarch, Air 2000, and European regularly carry fans into Europe. (Recently Celtic it has to be said!!! :D :D :D :D )
I agree totally with the easyjet captain's decision. Bear in mind though, both sets of fans were involved! (For clarity, I am a Celtic fan.) Now I wont say anymore before this thread is closed for losing the topic!
Eff Oh.

2nd Oct 2001, 19:21
I quite agree with the Cap'n having the authority to refuse boarding of drunk passengers, but I do have a problem with this particular event.

Excuse me if I am mistaken or have not seen sufficient information on this, but my question is this:

All of the pax were refused boarding at 2330 as they were drunk, which is fair enough. But, can someone explain how some of these passengers sobered up really quickly in order to be flown to Belfast at 0200. Is this a miracle of modern medicine? Joking aside, were the passengers drunk at 2330 suddenly sober 2 and a half hours later?

Even easyjet have said that 90% were drunk (QED 10% were sober), so why were the sober passengers denied boarding, or could ezy not be bothered to take anyone at all.

I believe this may be the reason why certain of the passengers said they were going to take the matter further when they arrived back in Belfast.

Can anyone shed light on this, as any medic will tell you, that no one can sober up without medical intervention in 2 and a half hours.

As I said at the beginning, I agree not to take pax when they are drunk, but in this scenario it seems many were not, yet they were refused boarding. If there is a genuine explanation it is OK, but if not then I believe passenger rights have been seriously eroded under the 'guise' of 'safety'.

Imagine you are in the departure lounge stone cold sober, and everyone else is pissed, and the airline tells you you cannot get on the plane because everyone else is drunk - wouldn't you be hacked off?

Scotflight Aviation
4th Oct 2001, 14:53
Good point Flypast..the other question I have (which might answer yours) is: were the 10% ordinary passengers or were they also travelling as part of the (drunk) group..and therefore insisting to travel with their friends?
Never got that info.
Anyway, I still think football's a dreadful game. I remember being a young boy of 10 with aeroplane pictures all over my bedroom wall..and my (football daft) pal had pictures all over his of men kissing each other after scoring a goal.
All seems a bit poofy to me !!
(Nope..I'm NOT politically...whatever !)

7th Oct 2001, 13:16
In answer to the previous question,it was the police who dictated who did and didn't travel,Unfortunately the innocent ones were left behind as the police wanted the rowdy ones off their hands,too much hassle for them apparently.If the capt had taken only some pax on the first flight the ones left behind would have seriously kicked off.

Whiskey Zulu
7th Oct 2001, 16:17
Celtic fans were an absolute disgrace on a spotty M charter to Europe last year. Had the female purser, of many years experience, close to tears and wanting to quit the job altogether. Flight was delayed, etc, etc...