• September 29, 2016
    Last updated 1 minute ago


False alarm: Saudi Arabian Airlines jet isolated at Manila airport

Pilot mistakenly sends code to control tower stating the plane had been hijacked, says airport manager

Gulf News Web Report
12:54 September 20, 2016
Saudi Arabian Airlines
Saudi Arabian Airlines

Manila: A reported threat to a Saudi Arabian Airlines commercial jet following a distress call from the pilot upon landing in Manila turned out to be a false alarm, according to airport authorities.

The general manager of the Manila International Airport said that a pilot of  Flight SVA 872  had mistakenly activated a "Squawk 7500" code, promoting airport police to isolate the aircraft, and delaying passengers' disembarkation.

The pilot of Flight SVA 872 was earlier reported to have advised the control tower that the plane was "under threat".

The crew of the Saudi plane informed the airport upon landing that the distress call was mistake, according to the airport manager.

A squawk 7500 code is an emergency code signalling to the air traffic controllers that the aircraft has been hijacked.

Police immediately surrounded the plane at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

The flight was isolated in a secluded portion of the Manila airport as part of a security protocol.

The plane is carrying returning pilgrims from the annual Haj. Passengers should have disembarked at 1 pm (9am Dubai time).

Passengers were seen disembarking from the aircraft at the time of posting.