TAP Portugal A319

Drunk pilot stranded passengers in Stuttgart

More than 100 passengers have been stranded at Stuttgart airport after a co-pilot was found drunk in the cockpit just before takeoff.

The airline, TAP Air Portugal, apologised after having to cancel the flight “due to the pilot’s incapacity”.

Shortly before the TAP Air Portugal flight was to takeoff to Lisbon on Friday night, an airport employee noticed the co-pilot walking unsteadily and smelling of alcohol. He notified airport authorities, which decided to keep the plane on the ground. It wasn’t immediately clear if the 40-year-old co-pilot was detained.

The German news agency dpa reported Saturday that all 106 passengers were put up at hotels overnight. TAP tweeted Saturday that the passengers would only be able to fly to Lisbon on Monday, “which is, at the moment, the first day with seats available.”

Stuttgart prosecutors immediately suspended the copilot’s flying licence and fixed bail of €10,000 (£9,000).

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