‘One Too Many’ reports drop in arrests for disruptive behaviour at UK airports

By Andrew Pentol |


Forces covering Britain’s 20 busiest airports, were asked to provide information on the number of arrests for drunk and disorderly behaviour on aircraft and in airports.

The ‘One Too Many’ campaign has reported a decline in the number of arrests caused by disruptive passenger behaviour since the launch of the campaign in July 2018.

Building on the UK Aviation Industry Code of Practice on Disruptive Passengers, the campaign is the first of its kind to bring the UK Travel Retail Forum, the Airports Operators Association, the International Air Transport Association and Airlines UK together.

Requests for information covering the periods 1 April 2017 to 31 March 2018 and April 1 2018 and March 31 2019 were sent to the 16 forces covering Britain’s 20 busiest airports.

The forces were asked to provide the number of people arrested on suspicion of being drunk (or drunk and disorderly) on aircraft and a separate breakdown of the number of people arrested on suspicion of being drunk (or drunk and disorderly) in an airports.


Responses have been broken down by airport with most forces providing location information. For those which didn’t, assumptions have been made where forces only cover one major airport.

Some airports are not listed because either no arrests were made, or the relevant forces did not provide comparable data within the time limit.


Francois Bourienne, Chair, UKTRF

In terms of the number of arrests inside British airports, there were 103, 81, 47 and 40 during the periods mentioned above at London Heathrow, London Gatwick, Glasgow and Liverpool John Lennon.

Birmingham, Stansted, London Luton and Edinburgh, registered 39, 37, 26 and 22 arrests respectively, while Bristol, Newcastle, Leeds Bradford and Southampton each reported just 19, 12, 12 and three.

At Aberdeen, Cardiff and London City International Airports, the number of arrests amounted to three, two and two. Exeter Airport reported just one arrest.

Francois Bourienne, Chair of the UK Travel Retail Forum said: “It is promising to see a decline in the number of arrests caused by disruptive passenger behaviour since the One Too Many campaign made its debut.

We aren’t surprised by these results as many of our campaign partner airports have reported an individual decrease in the number of disruptive passenger incidents since the campaign began, even as passenger numbers have continued to rise across the UK.

He added: “We’re also very encouraged that the campaign has doubled in size since it began, with 20 airports now using the campaign to alert passengers to the risks and consequences of disruptive behaviour.

“The industry takes this issue very seriously and is coming together to tackle it by educating passengers on the penalties they will face has so far driven positive results. As for the arrests that unfortunately have taken place, this reflects the fact that serious penalties are enforced for offenders and should act as a warning.”



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