Nineteen fuming passengers forced off easyJet flight by pilot 'as it was too heavy'


Nineteen passengers were forced to disembark from an easyJet flight to Liverpool after the aircraft was deemed "too heavy to take off".

The flight from Lanzarote's Arrecife Airport to John Lennon Airport was delayed for nearly two hours because of adverse weather conditions and weight limitations.

The departure, originally scheduled for 9.45pm on Wednesday, July 5, didn't take off until nearly 11.30pm after holidaymakers volunteered not to fly.

A video shared by a passenger with the Liverpool Echo captured the moment a flight crew member addressed the passengers about the situation.

The pilot explained: "Thank you for getting here today. Because there are so many of you, it's a pretty heavy aircraft. That heavy aircraft combined with a pretty short runway and with the current unfavourable conditions here in Lanzarote means the aircraft is too heavy to take off.

"I've been sat with my senior first officer, and we're very experienced with this and have done this before."

Concerned passengers murmured and shook their heads as they heard the announcement.

The pilot continued: "Now, you might be wondering what happens next, and that's what I've come in here to say. I have spoken with our operations team, and the one way to solve a problem with a heavy aircraft is to make it slightly lighter.

"If possible, I would like to ask up to 20 volunteers to choose not to fly to Liverpool tonight. If anyone wants to volunteer, there will be an incentive. The current number we've been quoted by easyJet is up to €500 per passenger who is willing to not fly tonight."

The flight, as indicated by easyJet's flight tracker, experienced delays because of "poor weather conditions in Lanzarote".

Initially scheduled to depart at 9.45pm, it finally took off at 11.24pm and landed at John Lennon Airport shortly after 3am on July 6.

A spokesperson for easyJet confirmed that 19 passengers volunteered to leave the flight due to weight restrictions.

The spokesperson stated: "This is a routine operational decision in these circumstances, and weight restrictions are in place for all airlines for safety reasons.

"In the event that a flight would exceed weight limits, we ask for passengers to volunteer to transfer to a later flight free of charge, which is what happened on this occasion, and volunteers are provided with compensation in line with regulations.

"The safety and welfare of our passengers and crew is always easyJet's highest priority."

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