Fake Explosive Found on Jet

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Fake Explosive Found on Jet

SEATTLE (AP) -- An Alaska Airlines flight attendant was stunned Saturday to reach into a child's backpack for crayons and find what looked like an explosive device, prompting an emergency U-turn and landing at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

''She had quite a shock indeed,'' said airline spokesman Jack Evans, explaining the device actually was a training aid being used by Alaska's security firm to conduct a routine test in the airport terminal.

Chutes on the MD-80 series airliner were deployed and passengers slid to the ground after the emergency landing around 3 p.m., airport spokesman Bob Parker said. Two people suffered minor injuries from the slide and were treated at the scene and released.

The boy, 8 or 9 years old, was by chance carrying a backpack identical to the one used in the test, Evans said. The boy laid his pack on a security checkpoint conveyor belt at the same time as the ''passenger'' in the test put the identical bag on, and the boy picked up the wrong bag on the other side.

The boy was traveling unaccompanied on Alaska Flight 444, which departed Sea-Tac for Ontario, Calif. at 2:06 p.m. with 83 passengers and five crew members aboard. About 30 minutes into the flight, the boy asked the flight attendant for his bag so he could use his crayons, and that was when she discovered the device, Evans said.

The plane immediately turned back. The Port of Seattle Police department's bomb squad was called to the scene and determined the device was a dummy, Parker said.

Passengers were being put on other flights.

AP-NY-03-11-00 2127EST< 

-- viewer (justp@ssing.by), March 11, 2000


wow scary. As if the lack of leg-room weren't enough to cause discomfort.

-- cin (cinlooo@aol.com), March 12, 2000.

And everyone wonders why I'm not planning to fly anywhere for spring break.

-- (kb8um8@yahoo.com), March 12, 2000.

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