Mateusz Maszczynski is a serving international flight attendant with experience…
A shocking video has emerged of a passenger at Heathrow Airport receiving urgent medical help after collapsing on the floor following a seven-hour wait to get through passport control it has been claimed.
The video was published by Kashif Iqbal on Monday after the mammoth wait for arriving passengers to be seen by an immigration officer. The West London airport has warned that the wait to get across the border was now regularly tipping six hours and that the situation was becoming “untenable”.
Chris Garton, chief solutions officer at Heathrow, told a parliamentary committee earlier this week that the police were being called to deal with tensions that flare up as people queue for hours at a time.
“We’re starting to see disruption in some of the arriving passengers,” Garton explained. “If you’re made to queue for two or three hours, it’s not something you want to do and we’re even having to involve the police service to help us.”
“The situation is becoming untenable,” Garton continued, explaining that the situation has been caused by 100 per cent manual compliance checks on all arriving passengers – passengers must show a negative pre-departure test certificate, a completed passenger locator form and evidence that they’ve booked post-arrival tests.
Garton said the Home Office had failed to staff the border with extra immigration officers despite the labour intensive work that was now involved and the mounting queues.
Queue times are on average, according to Heathrow, in excess of two hours and on occasion stretch to six hours and more.
In the video, the woman is tended to by a solitary worker while an immigration officer continues his checks unphased. Around the immigration hall, passengers sit on the floor as they patiently wait for their turn to be called forward.
Passengers have previously expressed concern that they were being trapped a confined space with little to no social distancing for hours a time. The Home Office has defended its performance, saying it was Heathrow’s responsibility to manage queues and that it wouldn’t apologise for making sure that passengers were complying with COVID-19 restrictions.
A spokesperson suggested the problems at the border could be alleviated by passengers following government advice to avoid all non-essential international travel.
Photo Credit: Brookgardener / Shutterstock.com
Mateusz Maszczynski is a serving international flight attendant with experience at a major Middle East and European airline. Mateusz is passionate about the aviation industry and helping aspiring flight attendants achieve their dreams. Cabin crew recruitment can be tough, ultra-competitive and just a little bit confusing - Mateusz has been there and done that. He's got the low down on what really works.