Flights grounded and delays at Belfast International as weather leaves hundreds of passengers stranded

Frustrated passengers in Tenerife on Saturday night who had their flights to Belfast cancelled due to poor weather conditions

'CARNAGE' was how one holidaymaker described Belfast International Airport on Saturday as hundreds of passengers were left stranded for hours following flight cancellations due to the weather.

Belfast man Kevin Farrell and his family were on a flight from Majorca and were due to touch down shortly after 2pm when the pilot informed them they would have to 'circle' the city due to poor conditions.

Thirty minutes later passengers were told the plane was running out of fuel and they had to fly to Dublin - where they remained for a further three hours on the runway.

"When we were circling the airport it was like being on a roller-coaster. People were being sick everywhere and children were screaming," he said.

"A pilot said we were to go to Prestwick but then it was Dublin. We sat in Dublin for three hours - there was no food and people were becoming frantic with the heat."

By the time the plane got back to Belfast, there was a further three-hour delay for luggage.

"There was basically no ground staff about, two cancelled flights and about 300 people in the small baggage area watching two suitcases go round the carousel for two hours. The police turned up at one point. It was utter carnage," Mr Farrell added.

Flights to Naples, Gdansk and Faro were also cancelled, leaving hundreds of travellers stranded - with the Poland-bound passengers boarding their plane twice before it was finally grounded.

Belfast International Airport's business development director, Uel Hoey told the BBC that for a short period on Saturday afternoon, ground staff had to stop working due to safety concerns caused by the "horrendous" weather.

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