Officials at Heathrow airport are still investigating how the 13-year-old boy was able to evade airport security when he boarded the transatlantic flight. A spokesperson for the Metropolitan Police tells Yahoo Lifestyle that the boy was identified by cabin crew during pre-flight check, where they discovered that he was without any travel documents.
“The boy was an unaccompanied minor. He is not a UK national,” the spokesperson says. “He is believed to have arrived at Heathrow as a transit passenger.”
A woman named Rachel Richardson took to Twitter to share updates on the incident, where she wrote about sitting on the tarmac for nearly two hours because of the security breach. However, it only became worse when the flight was de-planed in order for all passengers to go back through security.
So I survived my six hour wait at Heathrow but am now delayed on the tarmac because a young boy made his way onto our plane - BA269 - without a ticket. Big security breach. So much fun for everyone on board 🤪 We were meant to take off at 4.15pm. It’s nearly 6pm 😬— Rachel Richardson (@RachelARich) July 14, 2019
Hey @British_Airways thank you for putting our safety first but it’s totally chaotic here as an entire plane goes back through security. Very little information from staff. Be thankful that the #DjokovicFederer nailbiter is keeping some of us amused pic.twitter.com/tlTVfU0mGn— Rachel Richardson (@RachelARich) July 14, 2019
A Heathrow spokesperson tells Yahoo Lifestyle that although “the individual did not represent a security risk,” all passengers were re-screened “purely as a precaution.”
After the nearly four-hour delay and second security screening, Richardson tweeted that several passengers decided not to fly on the British Airways plane, leading to even more of a delay as luggage needed to be taken off of the flight. However, about five hours after the scheduled departure time, the plane finally took off.
Nearly FIVE hours since we were meant to depart we have the all clear to go. I’ve been in Heathrow now for 11 hours. Feeling very 🤪— Rachel Richardson (@RachelARich) July 14, 2019
British Airways provided the following statement to Yahoo Lifestyle:
We have apologized to our customers for the delay to their flight after an issue during boarding. The safety and security of our customers and crew is always our top priority and everyone who had boarded the aircraft had been subject to security checks. We conducted additional precautionary screening as soon as this issue came to light and we are assisting the police with their enquiries.
The Heathrow spokesperson additionally ensured that they will be take extra precautions for future safety.
“We apologize for the disruption and will continue working closely with the authorities and our airline partners to keep the airport safe,” the spokesperson says.
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