Passengers who endured a two-day trans-Atlantic odyssey with sewage overflowing from a jet's lavatories are getting an apology from Continental Airlines Inc. for the "poor conditions."

Flight 71, with 168 customers on board, took off June 13 from Amsterdam bound for Newark, N.J., but only got as far as Shannon, Ireland, because of a problem with the restrooms.

The flight resumed the next day after repair work seemed to restore smooth flow in the lavatory system, a Continental spokesman said Thursday. But during the flight from Shannon to Newark, renamed Flight 1970, "the problem developed again," spokesman Dave Messing said.

When the plane landed in Newark, he said, it was discovered that the blockage was caused by someone flushing latex gloves down the toilet - despite signs that warn not to discard foreign objects into the system.

"Occasionally these instructions are overlooked," he said.

A passenger told Seattle television station KING that sewage flowed into the aisles, only one restroom was partially working, and flight attendants kept serving meals but told passengers not to eat much. He called it the worst flight of his life.

"I was forced to sit next to human excrement for seven hours ... it's a nauseating smell," Collin Brock said.

Messing, the spokesman for Houston-based Continental, said in a statement, "We deeply regret the serious inconvenience to our customers and are apologizing to them and compensating them for the poor conditions on the flight as well as the diversion and delay."

Messing said Continental is compensating passengers with travel vouchers, but he declined to say how much. A passenger has said he was offered a $500 voucher.