CHAOS has gripped airports again today with passengers forced to sleep on floors and luggage abandoned.
Holidaymakers are already facing hellish queues, cancelled flights and mountains of lost suitcases – and an insider has warned it will get WORSE next month when schools break for summer holidays.
Shocking photos have shown the true scale of the pandemonium occurring at airports – with hundreds of suitcases abandoned at baggage claim.
Snaps show a sea of bags cordoned off in no particular order – making travellers fear they may not see their belongings again for weeks.
Upsetting snaps show families being forced to sleep on the terminal floor in Heathrow this morning.
Now an airport worker for one of the UK’s major travel hubs has now lifted the lid on the industry’s turmoil.
The anonymous baggage handler, who has worked in the industry for more than a decade says the chaos enfolding is the worst he has ever seen.
And he believes it is only going to get worse as thousands of Brits are set to jet off next week when school holidays break.
He told The Times: “Before this year, I had never seen pilots helping to load and unload suitcases.
“In recent weeks, I have seen captains and first officers mucking in. At other airports, I hear it is now commonplace.
“Passengers are waiting up to six hours for their bags. The other day I saw a cleaner driving the luggage trolley on the tarmac, unescorted, because there were not enough baggage handlers to do it.
“And if people think the delays are bad now, it is nothing compared to what is going to happen when children break up from school at the end of July and beginning of August.”
There are triple the number of passengers flying in and out of Britian’s airports this summer compared to last year.
Hundreds of flights are being delayed or cancelled as there are not enough staff to cope with the booming demand.
And the baggage handler says his job is becoming dangerous as workers struggle to cope with the huge number of suitcases coming through.
He said: “At my airport, one of the biggest in the UK, we only have two thirds of the baggage handlers we need.
“We are so short-staffed that colleagues are taking safety risks just to get the bags on board and get the planes away.
“We use conveyor belts to get the bags on and off the planes, but sometimes there are not enough workers to bring them to the tarmac.
“Some baggage handlers have become so frustrated that they are no longer waiting for the belt and are hoisting each other into the hold and throwing bags from ground level up to the plane. They could break their necks if they fell.”
It comes as thousands of holidays are in jeopardy as sunseekers are warned strikes in England, Spain, Italy, Portugal, France and Belgium will make this summer “catastrophic”.
Staff from budget airline Ryanair in Spain, Italy, France, Portugal and Belgium will walk out in a row over pay and working conditions.
UK Ryanair crew have not voted to strike, but the action will still affect the thousands of Brits hoping to head to Europe this weekend.
Meanwhile, on-board crew at easyJet in Spain will ALSO strike for nine days in July.
And some 16,000 BA workers are threatening to join 700 Heathrow Airport check-in staff in a planned walk-out.
The workers, all of whom are based at Heathrow and are members of the GMB and Unite unions, could down tools as early as July 8.