Ordeal ends for Spanish visitors

A 32-hour ordeal ended tonight for hundreds of passengers aboard a Spanish airline, which was forced to make an emergency landing here on Sunday.

The Iberian aircraft, IBE 673, was flying from Madrid to Caracas, when a male passenger reportedly suffered a heart attack.

With the aircraft also running low on oxygen supplies, the flight was diverted to Barbados around 11 a.m. where the remaining passengers were accommodated at a local hotel overnight.

Upset passengers of IBE 673 protest in the departure lounge at GAIA today.

However, security had to be stepped up in the departure lounge at Grantley Adams International Airport earlier Monday afternoon as some of the passengers seemingly ran out of patience.

GAIA workers told Barbados TODAY that some of the visitors were behaving in a very aggressive manner and loudly demanding information about their flight. Some also demanded food, after waiting for several hours before their departure was confirmed.

A video taken of the noisy scene also showed airport officials seeking to re-assure some of the passengers.

The airline eventually left the island after seven o’clock Monday night after its supply of oxygen was met by one international carrier. 

11 Responses to Ordeal ends for Spanish visitors

  1. jrsmith May 16, 2017 at 4:53 am

    Fancy choosing barbados …..they will never land here again……..

    Reply
  2. Ricci Khan May 16, 2017 at 6:19 am

    I am anazed that how many BAJANS seem to offer comments without verifying any facts. Do you know JRSmith if they were any other airports within range of an aircraft which was low on fuel besides Barbados?

    Reply
  3. Helicopter(8P) May 16, 2017 at 9:22 am

    Barbados has two International ports of entry. Air and marine traffic in distress, from any nation around the globe are allowed emergency porting when under distress conditions!

    Reply
  4. Mackar May 16, 2017 at 10:33 am

    What happened to good old bajan hospatality. If these people where here for an extended time through no fault of their own we could have offered them some confort which include refreshments, then we should worry about the money part.

    I am a Bajan who visited spain on Iberia airline several times, On all occasions I was treated very well.

    Reply
  5. jrsmith May 16, 2017 at 12:03 pm

    The aircraft wasn’t low on fuel and bajan hospitality seems not to be happening…………. The aircraft was low on oxygen , security had to be stepped up….and so on……………………………..

    Reply
  6. JM May 16, 2017 at 1:34 pm

    @..Ricci Khan…the report stated the aircraft was running low on oxygen supplies …most likely for medical emergencies (heart attacks) as was reported. Fuel was not an issue. Iberia and other airlines overfly Barbados non-stop daily between countries in Europe/ South America. Detailed investigations however have to be carried out to determine why oxygen supplies were low and have them corrected before departure and mandatory crew rest could also have been a factor.
    @Mackar……..u are ‘funny’….almost as ‘ funny’as….jrsmith.

    Reply
  7. AubreyRichards May 16, 2017 at 2:26 pm

    AS FAR AS I SEE GAIA IS NOT FRIENDLY , THE IMIGRATIONS OFFICERS THEY DON’T HAVE ANY MANNERS THEY DON’T KNOW HOW TO TREAT VISITORS

    Reply
  8. shelly May 16, 2017 at 3:47 pm

    to all concerned nothing that happened had anything to do with the airport or Barbados the passenger was ill the airline had to use all the oxygen on the passenger so of course it had to be replaced and the passengers stayed at a nice hotel and of course they were here for hours and wanted to get home hence the impatience so pls stop the blaming we are a good nation quoted one passenger

    Reply
  9. Nikki May 16, 2017 at 5:29 pm

    Poor things having to stay in barbados for a night! (I could think or worse places!). They have been given a hotel for the night, will still go to their destination and probably claim travel compensation when they get home. People complain too much! I hope the guy that suffered a heart attack was ok.

    Reply
  10. Marie Clarke May 16, 2017 at 5:55 pm

    It is also the airline that needs to ensure that their passengers are taken care of. They need to ensure that the passengers are fed and accommodation organised as was needed in this case.

    Reply
  11. Alex Crowther July 29, 2017 at 3:17 pm

    Hi there all Bajans

    I was one of the passengers on that flight….I have zero complaints about your hospitality or our reception.

    Iberia played its normal game of failing to keep us informed.

    We vacated our rooms at the various hotels at around 10.00am and we’re taken to the airport.

    Regrettably we were not provided with any info regarding our departure time, although it was displayed as being around 12,30-13.00.

    By 15.30 we still had no news about a departure time. Some airport staff at the information counter then told some of the Italian passengers that the crew was still at their hotel, probably lounging around the pool.

    This upset many passengers. The crew eventually arrived about 17.00. During all that time Iberia failied to take care of passengers needs regarding food , information etc.

    Around 19.00 representatives of the handling company appeared and issued passenger voucher to the equivalent of US$ 10 each. Barely 15 min later, the aircraft commenced boarding. Many did not get to use them as a result.

    A light sandwich and a drink was provided on the plane after departure.

    I imagine the issue of crew Rest was the prime reason for the delay, and the discomfort at the airport due to the long stay was occassioned by Iberia not wanting to pay a second nights accommodation at the hotels, as checkout was at 11.00.

    EU rules do not make allowance for compensation of a financial nature when a delay is occassioned by an event such as a passenger falling ill and the aircraft having to be diverted. The airline in this case was responsible for due care of passengers, the provision of accomodation, food and access to a telephone call. Regrettably , I say again, Iberia fell down on this, as due to the time we got to the hotel, in my case at least, the kitchen was closing and many passengers got nothing to eat. I was lucky, getting there early, still, I had to pay myself,…..as the hotel had not received instruction from the handling company about feeding us.

    None of the problems experienced by any of us were due to a lack of Bajan hospitality.

    Thanks for having us

    All the best

    Alex Crowther.

    Reply

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