A Manchester to Cancun TUI flight was forced to make an emergency landing in Canada when a drunken female passenger attacked a fellow passenger and flight crew mid-air.

Authorities revealed that the 34-year-old British woman was "under the influence of alcohol" and was involved in a fight with another passenger and a flight crew member. The woman was detained by Sûreté du Québec, the predominantly French-speaking province's police department, after the flight was diverted on Sunday (22 October).

Holidaymakers, including a former rugby player and a police officer, are understood to have intervened and helped restrain the woman, The Manchester Evening News reported. They reportedly sat with the woman until the plane landed in Quebec City.

A spokesman for the Sûreté du Québec said the woman may face charges of "disturbing the peace, mischief, and jeopardising the safety of an aircraft".

"During the flight this individual was under the influence of alcohol and involved in an altercation with another passenger as well as a flight crew member," a statement by the police force said. "However no one was injured during this incident.

"Canadian law prohibits us from revealing her identity until such time as she is formally charged with a crime."

The woman was set to appear in court on Monday (23 October).

A spokesman for TUI said incidents like this were extremely rare and confirmed that the flight continued on and landed in Cancun later that day.

"We are sorry for any inconvenience caused to customers on flight TOM182 from Manchester to Cancun, which diverted to Quebec due to a disruptive passenger on board. The safety of customers and crew is our priority at all times and we operated a zero tolerance policy on any behaviour of this kind," the spokesman said.

He continued: "We appreciated the patience and understanding of customers affected by the diversion. Following this, we can confirm the flight has arrived safely in Cancun. We would like to reassure everyone that incidents of this nature are extremely rare."