Passenger describes terror of aborted landing at Heathrow airport as Storm Eunice batters planes

Left, Big Jet TV screengrab. Must credit Big Jet TV
Right, Zara Mohammed, a passenger on a plane due to land at Heathrow as she described her terror.
More than 200,000 people have tuned in to a YouTube channel livestreaming aircraft battling with high winds as they attempt to land at London's Heathrow Airport. Credit: Big Jet TV

A passenger on board a flight which had to abort its landing as it was battered by Storm Eunice has described her terror, saying that it felt "like the plane was made of paper".

Zara Mohammed was on board a British Airways flight from Istanbul to Heathrow on Friday morning which had to abandon its attempt to land, before being diverted to Stansted.

She compared the landing to a "rollercoaster", and described how fellow passengers were shrieking and being sick around her, while she prayed for a safe landing.

"Everything was smooth sailing until we got to near Heathrow, and then it felt like the plane was made of paper," said Ms Mohammed, speaking to ITV News Anglia from Stansted Airport.

"We were shaken, and you could feel the G-force in your stomach. It felt like being on a rollercoaster.

"Everybody was shrieking. I could see a lady behind me being sick, and I was holding on really tight.

"You could tell the pilot was trying to get control of the plane. It was moving [around] and swaying and it got so bad that he actually just had to stop and go back [and abort the landing] and he flew off in another direction.

"There was so much turbulence. I was praying. It felt like like we were in a movie... it was so real. It was really scary."

Ms Mohammed, who is the general secretary of the Muslim Council of Great Britain, said she was due to fly on to Glasgow on Friday and was waiting to find out how she would get there.

She said tensions among passengers were running high, made worse by the fact that their luggage had been trapped on board the plane.

Airports across the country have been experiencing disruption as a result of Storm Eunice, with many flights diverted to calmer areas.

Aviation analytics firm Cirium said at least 436 flights to, from or within the UK were cancelled on Friday.The highest proportion was at Heathrow, where 20% of flights were cancelled.

More than 200,000 people tuned in to Big Jet TV, a YouTube channel livestreaming aircraft battling with high winds as they attempted to land at Heathrow.

The channel was the second-highest trend in the UK on Twitter as of Friday afternoon.