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5 Passengers Removed From Flight When Plane Was ‘Too Heavy” To Take Off

By Leah Freeman-Haskin

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Imagine being asked to leave an airplane because the airline says it is too heavy to take off. This is the scenario that unfolded on a Loganair flight in the United Kingdom last weekend.

According to The Independent, the Saturday morning flight was originally delayed due to bad weather. Unfortunately for the airline, Independent journalist Ben Kelly was on the flight and reported on the situation from his seat via Twitter.

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“Very disappointing situation @SouthendAirport with @FlyLoganair. My flight to Derry has about 50 people on it and now we’re told it’s too heavy and 5 people are being asked to get off the flight so it can leave. No one is volunteering…” he wrote in a Twitter post. “The alternative for the people who get off the flight is having to leave this airport to go to another London airport to be flown to Belfast, which is 1.5-2 hours away from Derry.”

JetPix | Wiki Commons

Eventually, three passengers agreed to leave the plane while two others, who were the last to check-in, were selected by airline staff.

The airline apologized for the initial delay due to bad weather conditions, but did not offer an apology for removing the five passengers.

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“When the weather cleared at Derry, a combination of low pressure and rainfall left the runway surface at Southend in a condition which imposed limitations on the aircraft performance. The aircraft was consequently over its maximum available take-off weight for the conditions,” the regional carrier’s chief executive Jonathan Hinkles told The Independent. “Five customers volunteered to travel via another routing to Derry. The full costs of this will be covered by Loganair and the customers have each been offered €250 ($277) in compensation.”

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