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Elderly Woman Left on Aircraft

It has come to light that an 88-year-old woman was left on board a Transavia flight.  Flying from Paris at 06:30 on the 28th of July, Maria Ferreira should have disembarked at Francisco Sá Carneiro Airport, Porto, at 07:45, but airline staff forgot about her, and the plane took off with her on board, finally landing at Madeira International Airport later that morning.

Maria, who uses a wheelchair, flew alone to spend time with her family. Her daughter had informed the airline that Maria would need assistance and was known to cabin crew. On arriving in Porto, Maria later told reporters ‘that everyone left the plane, and she sat all alone waiting for someone to help her.’  After a while, she noticed that other passengers were boarding and the plane took off again.  It was only when she arrived in Madeira that Maria realised that a mistake had happened.  Not knowing where she was she panicked, especially when a member of the cabin crew told her that she was now leaving the aircraft.

Maria’s family were equally distressed when she failed to turn up at the arrivals lounge in Porto, and it was only after several ‘hours of despair’ that they received a phone call from the Madeiran police saying that their mother was in fact in Madeira.

Maria finally reached Porto at 17:00, much to her family’s relief.

Samantha Gannon

info at

Madeira Weekly