Bomb Fears Force Romanian Plane to Make Emergency Landing
WARSAW, Poland (AP) _ A Romanian airlines plane made an emergency landing in Warsaw today after the captain told Polish air controllers a bomb might be on board.
The British-made BAC-111 jet operated by Tarom airlines was on a flight from Bucharest to Copenhagen when the pilot requested permission to land, said Marek Wos, spokesman for Warsaw’s Okecie airport.
All 21 passengers and crew were immediately evacuated and military experts searched the plane, Wos said. He declined to say what prompted the pilot to report a bomb threat.
After two hours, an officer carried a heavy black briefcase from the plane and put it in a special container for transporting explosives before driving away.
Police and airport spokesman, however, refused to confirm that a bomb was found.
On Friday, a Tarom airlines plane crashed shortly after takeoff from Bucharest’s Otopeni international airport, killing 60 people. Investigators suspect an in-flight explosion caused that crash.
Today’s bomb scare prompted officials to temporarily shut down and evacuate both Otopeni airport and Bucharest’s domestic Baneasa airport. All planes were searched at Otopeni.
A Tarom airlines plane enroute to Paris made an emergency landing Monday in the Romanian city of Timisoara after reporting a bomb threat, but no explosives were found.
Bomb threats in Romania have not been limited to airports. Municipal government buildings, schools and other institutions also have been targeted.
``It’s all the rage,″ said Bucharest police spokesman Maj. Florin Ionescu. ``Certain irresponsible people get a kick out of making a bomb threat, and then going to see airplanes checked, places evacuated.″