Athugið þessi frétt er meira en 2 mánaða gömul.

Flight disruption from two incidents

29.09.2022 - 19:56
Mynd með færslu
 Mynd: Freyr Arnarson - RÚV
A suspected bomb on board prompted a cargo plane to divert to Keflavík last night—closing the airport to all traffic for around four hours in the process. In a separate incident, an Icelandair plane was damaged in an accident in London and remains there this evening, as police investigate.

Cargo diversion

The American cargo company UPS received a credible bomb threat and ground authorities decided to direct a Boeing 747-8 en-route from Germany to the USA to land in Iceland, with three crew on board.

Bomb disposal experts from the state police and the coastguard met the plane and searched it thoroughly. They did not find a bomb, but they did discover an illegal consignment of fireworks, replica firearms, and a suspicious liquid. Police are now investigating that, and one other, package and anticipate international cooperation will be required.

The search began around midnight and the package was discovered several hours later. Bomb disposal experts follow strict procedures and take their time. The airport was therefore closed for four hours.

Several late-night departures were cancelled, and others delayed. Late night arrivals were diverted to Akureyri, Edinburgh, Egilsstaðir, and Glasgow. All later continued their journeys to Keflavík. One of them, a Transavia flight from Paris, was moments away from taking off from Egilsstaðir and returning to France, after over two hours on the tarmac, when Keflavík opened again—much to the passengers’ relief.

Hampered at Heathrow

One of the planes diverted last night was not the late Icelandair flight from London Heathrow. That plane was hit on its tail section, while stationary at the airport, by the wing of a Korean Air plane.

The aircraft is damaged and will require repairs before flying again. As of this evening, however, the Icelandair jet is still on-stand as British Transport Police investigate the incident.

It is not clear when Icelandair will get the plane back and passengers who flew to London on the plane have still not recovered their luggage.

According to Icelandair, the unloading of the plane’s hold is at the discretion of the police at this stage.

The incident occurred when the wingtip of a Korean Air aeroplane hit the horizontal stabiliser of the Icelandair Boeing 757 as it waited to enter its gate.

Passengers described the jolt as similar to heavy turbulence. Nobody was hurt. It is not yet clear how badly damaged the plane is, or who will foot the bill for repairs.

Icelandair has sent a representative to London, charged with reuniting passengers with their luggage as quickly as possible.

The incident did not cause significant delays to other Icelandair services, as spare aircraft were available. Passengers bound for Iceland were accommodated at local hotels near Heathrow last night. They were assigned seats on two flights at lunchtime today—one from Heathrow and the other from Gatwick.

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