Police investigate fires started deliberately on Monarch aircraft

Police investigate fires started deliberately on Monarch aircraft

Police are reported to have started an investigation after a passenger allegedly started two fires on a Monarch Airlines flight from Birmingham to Sharm el Sheikh.

West Midlands Police revealed that the blazes are thought to have been started deliberately during the flight last week.

Flames were put out by cabin crew and police were waiting for the Airbus A321 carrying 201 passengers to land on August 27, the Mirror reported.

But the aircraft was left unserviceable, leaving holidaymakers due to return to Birmingham stranded for 24 hours while a replacement was flown out.

West Midlands Police said no arrests had been made and investigations continued, although eyewitness accounts suggested a suspect was questioned on arrival in Egypt.

Passengers heading back to Birmingham were put up in a hotel as their wait dragged on, according to the Birmingham Mail.

An unnamed passenger reportedly said: “The plane was unserviceable because a man set fire to onboard toilets deliberately while also smoking and abusing the cabin crew, terrifying crew and passengers.”

A West Midlands Police spokeswoman said: “We have launched an investigation after two small fires are believed to have been deliberately started on a Birmingham flight bound for Egypt.

“The fires were contained and extinguished by staff aboard the Monarch flight from Birmingham to Sharm El Sheikh and no one was injured.

“Officers from the Airport Policing Unit continue to investigate the circumstances around the incidents.”

A Monarch spokeswoman said: “The A321 aircraft, which was carrying 201 passengers and seven crew landed safely in Sharm El Sheikh where local police were in attendance.

“UK authorities have been notified and are dealing with the matter.

“As the alleged incident is the subject of a police investigation, we are not in a position to comment further.”

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