A passenger jet declared an in-flight emergency over Galicia in northwestern Spain and was forced to land at A Coruña airport on Friday, November 19.
THE airplane, flight V7 3538 on route from Bilbao and operated by low-cost airline Volotea, was carrying 105 passengers- including a baby.
After a safe landing at its scheduled time of 7.30 am, all passengers, including the crew, were transferred to a secure room at the airport without their luggage while security forces inspected the interior of the plane.
According to media reports, no device was found in the cabin or the hold of the aircraft which had been parked well away from airport buildings for safety reasons.
Unconfirmed reports indicate that alarm was raised by inmates from a prison in the Basque Country. Apparently, an inmate and passenger on the plane who had been released on temporary leave was going to blow himself up.
Spanish airport operator Aena issued this statement on social media just after the aircraft landed.
‘The #ACoruña airport has activated its emergency plan due to threat on the Bilbao-A Coruña flight operated by @volotea. Passengers have disembarked and the aircraft is in a remote parking lot.’
The Guardia Civil took over control of the operation after launching a large police deployment at the airport. Firefighters and local police were also present at the scene. After gaining clearance from the security forces at 9:45 am, the airport was allowed to carry on normal operations. Airport operator Aena said events had been closely monitored internally by traffic controllers at La Coruña and Bilboa airports.