Ten-year-old boy hijacks Alaska Airlines flight by threatening another passenger
A prank by a 10-year-old has prompted a hijacking scare on an Alaska Airlines flight from Seattle to Orlando.
The incident happened on Flight 16 on Sunday evening when the boy allegedly sent a disturbing message to another passenger via the iPhone’s AirDrop feature, setting off the alarm as the plane reached the taxiway of the Orlando International Airport.
“We are taxiing and all of a sudden the plane is interrupted with a particular notice that we are going to park on a busy runway for a while,” an anonymous passenger told WKMG.
It was then announced that there was a threat to the plane and that the flight would not approach a terminal anytime soon, said the passenger, who was traveling with his family of eight.
Following the threat alarm, police, armed with machine guns, surrounded the plane, with some boarding the flight to clarify the situation.
Authorities said a 10-year-old boy texted via AirDrop about the plane’s hijacking to another passenger, who informed a crew member.
The plane was parked on the runway for an hour before authorities allowed it to be transported to the gate.
“We were looking (up and down the plane) for the suspects but we didn’t see any. Our concern was that it was a bomb threat as they moved us away from any terminal “added a passenger.
The prankster and his mother, who was crying and apologizing to everyone, were escorted off the plane. No charge would have been brought against the minor.
Alaska Airlines said in a statement that “the aircraft continued to its gate and passengers disembarked as normal.”
“We take safety seriously and apologize for any inconvenience caused to our customers,” he added.