(The Mirror) –A flight full of British holidaymakers bound for Greece had to be diverted to Bulgaria due to the ‘disgusting’ behaviour of drunk passengers.
It was claimed a group of young people – many on holiday for the first time without their parents – began arguing after downing booze sneaked aboard in soft drink bottles.
One man was said to have become so aggressive he threatened to cause a mass brawl.
It is also claimed he lit a cigarette in the toilet while another girl allegedly had her face slapped amid the mayhem.
The flight carrying 180 passengers from Manchester to Heraklion was diverted to Sofia by the pilot who became alarmed at the behaviour on board.
It caused a delay of more than two hours for the holidaymakers who were left angered by the disgraceful scenes.
One said: “There were groups of young lads and their girlfriends in their teens and early twenties and it looked as though they were on their first holidays without their mums and dads.
“They had sneaked vodka on board in Sprite bottles and were drinking it throughout the flight.
“There was one bloke who just got completely out of hand. He was just drunk and abusive and shouting at everyone.
“The behaviour was disgusting. There was shouting and swearing to start with but it then got worse and became very scary.
“All the passengers as well as the cabin crew were telling them to calm down but they just wouldn’t listen.
“When the bloke started threatening to start a brawl the captain said he was diverting the plane.
“When we landed a Sofia police came on board and took the bloke off. To be honest, it was a relief to get rid of the idiot.
“There was a couple on the plane with a new born baby and I felt really sorry for them.”
The Thomson holiday flight TOM 2570 had left Manchester at 7pm on Thursday evening.
Thomson say the pilot first radioed police to meet the plane and the unruly passenger at its destination in Heraklion, Greece but diverted as the man’s behaviour deteriorated.
The plane landed in Sofia at 11.55pm and passengers then endured a 90-minute wait on the tarmac before they could take off again to their final destination.
It is believed the man at first refused to leave the plane which caused some of the delay.
It meant their flight, which had been due to land at 10pm, didn’t arrive until 12.37am.
A Thomson spokeswoman said: “Thomson Airways would like to apologise for any inconvenience experienced by passengers on board flight TOM2570 from Manchester to Heraklion, which diverted to Bulgaria yesterday due to a customer incident on board.
“We operate a zero tolerance policy in relation to any disruptive behaviour.
“The passenger in question was removed from the aircraft and met by police.
“The flight departed within two hours to ensure the other customers could get away on their holiday as soon as possible.
“Customer safety is our priority at all times and we would like to reassure passengers that incidents of this nature are extremely rare.”
The incident came just 24 hours after airline Monarch banned six passengers for life after they became disruptive on a flight from Birmingham to Turkey.