Italian cash-strapped budget airline Wind Jet has suspended all its flights, leaving hundreds of passengers stranded.
At Rome’s Fiumicino airport, some 200 Israeli nationals – who had been due to fly to Tel Aviv – spent the night at the terminal.
Another five flights to destinations across Italy were cancelled as well.
Italian cash-strapped budget airline Wind Jet has suspended all its flights, leaving hundreds of passengers stranded
The Sicily-based firm is now close to losing its operating licence after takeover talks with Alitalia failed.
Further chaos is expected as some 300,000 passengers across Italy have booked tickets with Wind Jet in coming weeks.
Alitalia – Italy’s national airline – says it will help Wind Jet passengers to find alternative flights, but only on payment of supplements.
The country’s aviation authorities have set up a crisis centre to help stranded passengers at the beginning of the busiest holiday week of the year.
X-ray has identified a Norwegian tourist sleeping on a moving baggage belt at Rome’s Fiumicino airport.
The unnamed 36 year-old man reportedly climbed over one of the check-in desks and fell asleep on the belt that takes luggage to be loaded on to planes.
When the belt started moving, he travelled for around 50m curled up in the foetal position.
X-ray has identified a Norwegian tourist sleeping on a moving baggage belt at Rome's Fiumicino airport
He apparently remained asleep after staff spotted him in the X-ray machine, stopped the belt and alerted police.
The tourist, who appeared to have been drinking heavily, will now face charges in relation to the incident according to Italy’s
La Repubblica newspaper.
The incident has raised questions about security at the airport, but a police spokesperson told the paper that the man could not have got through to secure areas of the airport.
“There is a security system – a sort of roll-up blind – which can only be opened by the member of staff who loads the baggage,” the officer said. “[The Norwegian] could have carried on going round the main belt but he could never have ended up in sensitive areas of the airport.”