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Watch: Brawling passengers force Malta-bound Ryanair flight to divert

'They were being aggressive towards everyone', a passenger said

 

A Malta-bound Ryanair flight was forced to divert to Pisa yesterday after a fracas broke out between rowdy passengers while the plane was in mid-air. 

Video filmed by a passenger aboard the Brussels to Malta flight showed brawlers shoving and swinging at one another as passengers lined the aisle in an attempt to contain the scuffle. 

The trouble-makers "were being a nuisance and aggressive towards everyone," Thomas Engerer told Times of Malta. Mr Engerer, who shot the video, said the fight was between two men and their respective female partners. 

As other passengers looked on with a mixture of concern and bemusement, an announcement on the flight's PA system informed passengers that the flight would be diverted.

The flight captain can subsequently be heard angrily telling passengers that "this is not acceptable at all" before announcing that the flight will land in Bologna as a result of the fight. The plane actually ended up diverting to Pisa.

 

Footage showed commotion mid-air.Footage showed commotion mid-air.

According to Mr Engerer, all four people involved in the fight were detained by Italian police upon landing.

Police came on board the flight and used Mr Engerer's video footage to identify the culprits, he recalled. 

"The police and captain were very efficient," he said. "Police came on board and took them away."

After a brief delay, passengers buckled up and continued their onward journey to Malta in peace, making it to Malta International Airport around one hour behind schedule. 

A Ryanair spokesman told Times of Malta that the airline took a very tough stance when it came to such incidents. 

"We will not tolerate unruly or disruptive behaviour at any time and the safety and comfort of our customers, crew and aircraft is our number one priority. This is now a matter for local police," the airline said. 

 

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