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Bomb Scare at PGIA Print E-mail
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Written by Administrator   
Thursday, 28 July 2011 00:00

Drawings on Immigration Form.There was a major security incident, caused by a teenager’s prank, which took place at the Phillip Goldson International Airport (PGIA) on Monday July 25th. It caused a delay in normal air traffic, and it involved the Pilot of a Delta flight from Atlanta radioing to Belize airport authorities of a possible bomb threat.


Lieutenant Colonel David Jones, Chief of Staff and Bomb Expert at BDF, told the media that he received a call that Flight 4345 was possibly compromised.

According to Jones, in the chronological order of events, the plane, which had 71 passengers and 4 crew members, was in the air and was about 30 minutes away from making its final decent. That's when a 16 year old French young man from Paris, decided to pull a prank.The necessary immigration forms were already issued.

Jones said that according to his questioning of the young man, his female friend in the adjoining seat was bored. The teen said that, in an effort to entertain her, he drew the letter, "HELP!" on the back of one of the forms. On the front, he drew a mushroom cloud, which is created by an atomic bomb.

He then proceeded to lift the paper up so that the female friend and another of his friend sitting in another row could see it. That's when one of the flight attendants saw the message and became alarmed.

The teenager told Jones that the attendant immediately moved towards him and inquired about the message and if everything was okay. The attendant then demanded the paper which fell out of the teen's hand; the attendant picked it up and saw the drawing of the explosion.

The attendant called for the aircraft's captain, who was shown the messages. The captain radioed in and asked for the Belizean contingency plan to be executed for a possible bomb threat.

Jones said that several sections of the security forces were called to PGIA. When the plane landed, it was cordoned off in a far section of the runway, away from the main building.

Jones said that the passengers were removed and he personally searched the aircraft thoroughly, before declaring that it was safe and no explosive devices were onboard.

Police say that the teen and his mother were detained, questioned and released on Tuesday July 26th; there was no charge brought against him for his actions.

This is significant because if he had done this in another country, he would have been given severe penalties for this threat.