The start of summer vacation heralds freedom, relaxation and a dose of sunshine for many – but sadly for some it didn’t start that way.
Scenes from Manchester Airport this morning that will make travellers’ stomachs sink show the dreaded queues replenishing themselves – this time even as they meander towards the car park.
Footage also emerged of huge queues at Heathrow Airport in London and Stansted Airport in Essex this morning.
Trouble in Manchester apparently started to show earlier this week on the UK’s hottest day, which saw temperatures soar to a ridiculous 40C.
Passengers said they had to endure long waits for their luggage, due to staff absences amid the heatwave.
Baggage conveyor belts broke down for around 30 minutes in Terminal 1, and others said there were two-hour delays in Terminal 3.
Elliott Ward, a Manchester transport planner who arrived from Barcelona at Terminal 3, found himself caught up in the chaos.
The 23-year-old told the Manchester Evening News: “We got off the plane having landed 20 minutes before. There were signs to go to the relevant conveyor belt.
‘About 10 items appeared, then nothing for two hours because there was a “technical problem”. There were items from other thefts circling on the other conveyor belts.
“A few more flights arrived and they just piled into baggage collection and faced the same problem.”
A Manchester Airport spokesperson told Metro.co.uk that there were no issues with security queues this morning, and that those queues would be the responsibility of the airline and ground handler records.
They added: “Outdoor spaces are often used by passengers when busy to manage queues and ensure there is no congestion inside the terminal.
‘I haven’t heard of any issues this morning and imagine that although the pictures look busy the queues moved quickly.’
Airports are not the only means of transport facing increased demand today.
A critical incident has been declared at the Port of Dover, with skippers claiming they have been ‘abandoned’ by border controls.
There are huge queues of up to four hours which has disrupted travel plans and potentially affected many families on the day children finish school for the UK summer vacation -United.
Huge queues of up to four hours disrupted travel plans this morning, which comes on the day when many children in England go their separate ways for school holidays.
A spokesperson for the Port of Dover said: “We are deeply frustrated that the resource on the French border overnight and early this morning was woefully insufficient to meet our forecast demand and regret even more deeply the consequences which will now be felt by so many.’
Travel experts say “the start of the great getaway was ruined.”
Protests are also expected to take place on the motorways today over fuel prices amid the cost of the rising crisis.
Drivers are warned that ‘slow roadblocks’ are planned on parts of the M4, M5 and M32 this Friday.
Police are advising motorists to plan ahead for protests set to start on the A in Bristol, where traffic was halted earlier this month.
A photo posted to a Facebook group called Fuel Price Stand Against Tax suggested protests would take place “nationwide”.
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