A woman who tried to open a Jet2 aircraft door in mid-flight has been jailed for two years.
The incident on a Jet2 flight to Dalaman from Stansted with 206 people on board on June 22 last year, prompted two fighter jets to be scrambled.
Haines, who admitted two charges, was sentenced at Chelmsford Crown Court.
She pleaded guilty to endangering the safety of a passenger aircraft and assault by beating.
Haines said that she “blacked out and didn’t really remember what happened” after mixing alcohol with medication, prosecutor Michael Crimp told the court.
Cabin crew member Charley Coombe suffered scratches as she tried to prevent Haines from opening the aircraft door.
Jet2 calculated that the incident cost the company £86,000, the court was told.
Haines’ barrister Oliver Saxby QC described her as “a troubled young person with a number of serious issues”.
She had been given a community order for similar offences involving alcohol and a loss of control 17 days before the incident, the court was told.
Saxby said Haines had been diagnosed with mental ill health and had not touched alcohol since June 22.
“She wasn’t just drunk, she was unwell,” he said, adding that she felt “appalled”.
Judge Charles Gratwicke said: “Those that are trapped in the confined space of the aircraft will inevitably be distressed, frightened and petrified by the actions of those who in a drunken state endanger their lives.
“For some it will be their worst nightmare come true.”
Jet2 chief executive Steve Heapy welcomed the sentence and said it was “one of the most serious cases of disruptive passenger behaviour that we have experienced”.
He said Haines was now banned for life from the airline.
Heapy said she had “caused distress for customers as well as our crew” and added “we simply will not tolerate this on our flights”.
He also said the company would continue to work on the issue of “drinking to excess in the airport before flying, as well as the illicit consumption of duty free alcohol on board the aircraft”.
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