Flight UX1094 of the Spanish carrier Air Europa is scheduled for departure at 7:10 pm on November 6, 2019. The plane is parked at Amsterdam Schiphol’s D concourse and passengers are boarding. Suddenly, the plane sets off a hijack alert, while 27 passengers already are on board.
As a result, large scale emergency services turn out, including special forces, military police, the fire department, and helicopters. Moreover, pier D is evacuated. However, 2 hours later the alarm appears to be false. How is that possible?
The captain is in the cockpit instructing a trainee pilot. One of the things he wants to explain the trainee is what the codes are for. These are 4-digit codes and the captain enters 7500, the code for a hijack attempt. Next, he sends the code.
Security and emergency operations
This triggers off the security and emergency services that cannot immediately be stopped. Even if the captain would radio the services that it was a mistake, it wouldn’t halt the operations. The reason is that the pilot might be saying it it under threat of a hijacker. Therefore, the operations will only be stopped after security forces have observed that the alarm is false.
Hijack alert false
At 8:45 pm, the military police announce that they have escorted crew members and passengers from the plane to safety. A short while later AirEuropa admits that the cause of the incident is a mistake made in the cockpit and that the alarm is false.
An expensive blunder
Obviously, the captain has made a huge blunder by sending the 7500 code. He should only do that if security is seriously at stake. Now he needlessly caused numerous flight delays. Most likely, AirEuropa will receive a very high bill for the cost of the security and emergency operations. The bright side is that the security and emergency protocols at the airport have proved to be effective.
Related: “Panic at the emergency exit”
Tags: hijack alert, AirEuropa, Amsterdam Schiphol, false alarm