It was a long journey back to Melbourne for a group of Jetstar passengers who were left stranded for 30 hours after their scheduled plane from the Whitsundays was unable to fly due to an engineering fault.
Passengers making the three-hour journey from Queensland spent the night on the airport floor due to a lack of hotel availability in the area.
The Melbourne-bound flight was scheduled to fly out of Proserpine at 11 am on Tuesday but didn't arrive in Melbourne until late Wednesday afternoon. Travellers were left frustrated and angry with the airline. Children, a pregnant woman and the elderly were all caught up in the bungle.
Stranded Jetstar passengers frustrated
One passenger Simon Mossman told Today on Thursday morning it was not something he would wish on anybody.
"There was a lady who was very reliant on her wheelchair, she’s just come out of hospital and she had no choice but to sleep on the floor of the departure lounge,” he said.
"Sleeping on the floor isn‘t comfortable and it’s not something you wish on anybody. Especially after such a long day and lack of communication.”
The wheelchair-bound passenger Kaylene Cooper was flying home after being admitted to Mackay Base Hospital for three weeks due to a cellulitis flare-up.
Her son flew to Queensland to help her get home safely and said his 68-year-old mother was "sore and tired" after a "tough night".
"Emotions among passengers were very high last night and even Jetstar staff were getting emotional due to the strain that they were going through," he told the Herald Sun. "A security guard helped me get mum onto a couch to rest and sleep and I slept on the floor."
Jetstar apologises for delay
A Jetstar spokesperson explained that bad weather in Proserpine meant the airline could not fly a replacement aircraft or even an engineer to fix the problem.
"We’re really sorry for this lengthy disruption and know it would have been an uncomfortable night for passengers," they said.
Jetstar tried to organise a flight to take passengers to Brisbane where there would be accommodation, but fog prevented the flight from landing in the Whitsundays.
Food, drinks and support were reportedly available through the night for passengers. The passengers landed in Melbourne on Wednesday afternoon.
with NCA Newswire
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