The flight to Qatar was delayed for nearly four hours after the pilot got stuck in a lift (Picture: Getty)
An early morning flight to Qatar on Tuesday was unable to take off until firefighters freed the team, who were stranded from 6am to 9.30am.
Many passengers who were scheduled to board connecting flights in Qatar to other countries, encountered what one described as a ‘massive queue’ for meal vouchers while they waited for what they referred to as a ‘shambles’ to be resolved.
A passenger, who asked not to be named, told the Mail that everyone due to board the flight to the Qatari capital of Doha was moved out of the boarding area while they waited for an update.
The airport then confirmed that the flight crew were stuck in a lift and apologised to passengers for the delay.
‘The flight was due out at 7.45am to Doha, what they’ve told us is the pilot has been stuck in an airport lift since 6am, the passenger said. ‘Half the staff and the pilot and the staff are stuck in the lift. It’s shambolic.’
‘Everybody has connecting flights in Doha, no-one knows when the next flight is’ the passenger explained. ‘It’s the ground staff telling us the pilot is stuck.’
Passengers at Birmingham airport were left stranded for hours (Picture: Getty)
He said there was a ‘massive queue’ with passengers given meal tickets as they awaited an update.
The passenger added: ‘I’m off to Malaysia, there’s people here going to Australia, Bali, we’re just waiting now for a meal ticket which will be about £8 but it costs about £4.50 for a Costa coffee.
‘If the pilot has been stuck in there for so long, he may not even be in a fit state to fly, apparently he’s still in there. It’s some story isn’t it, you couldn’t make it up!’
Flight tracking data indicates the flight departed at 11.40am nearly four hours after its scheduled departure, and arrived in Doha at 8.28pm local time, which is 5.28pm UK time.
A Birmingham Airport spokesperson said yesterday: ‘At 6am today, airline crew members reported becoming stuck in one of our temporary lifts.
‘With our lift contractor unable to reactivate the lift system, West Midlands fire service removed a panel to allow the crew out just before 9.30am. We are very sorry to the airline crew members and customers affected by this.’
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The pilot and his entire flight crew were stranded for hours.