Ryanair has called for a pre-10am booze ban at airports after a group of drunken Irish-based holidaymakers forced an Ibiza-bound Ryanair flight from Dublin to divert to Paris on Saturday morning.
A group of up to 20 holidaymakers were involved in the unruly drink-fuelled disturbance, and three passengers were removed and detained by French police on arrival at Paris Beauvais on Saturday morning.
The captain of the return flight from the party island to Dublin on Saturday afternoon – delayed by 2hrs 40m as a result of the disturbance – apologised for the delay and explained the outward flight had had to divert due to the disturbance.
The captain said there had been children onboard the earlier flight, which was diverted over safety concerns for all the passengers.
The captain said the unruly passengers had been drinking at Dublin Airport prior to take-off.
The Ibiza-bound flight's scheduled take-off had been 8.50am on Saturday. Speaking of the episode, Ryanair spokesman Robin Kiely said: "This flight from Dublin to Ibiza diverted to Paris Beauvais after three passengers became disruptive inflight.
“The aircraft landed normally and the passengers were removed and detained by police upon arrival, before the aircraft continued to Ibiza.”
Mr Kiely said: “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.”
Mr Kiely was not able to comment on the costs to Ryanair of the diversion or the legal fate of the three passengers who were taken off the plane.
He said: “This is now a matter for local police.”
He said the incident “is exactly why we are calling for significant changes to prohibit the sale of alcohol at airports, such as a two-drink limit per passenger and no alcohol sales before 10am”.
He said: “It’s incumbent on the airports to introduce these preventative measures to curb excessive drinking and the problems it creates, rather than allowing passengers to drink to excess before their flights.”