News East West
NEW YORK: So much for the so-called tight security at US airports.
A nine-year-old boy without a boarding pass gets through three security checks, gets past flight attendants, boards a Delta Airlines flight from Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport and flies to Las Vegas.
The incident happened on Thursday.
The stowaway boy is detected only when flight crew find that the minor is not on their passenger list, nor is he accompanied by any adult. The crew report the matter to Las Vegas police who take the boy into protective custody on arrival.
Las Vegas police contact Minneapolis police about missing children in their area. In turn, Minneapolis police contact the boy’s family who tell them that they have not seen him since Thursday.
“I’ve worked at the airport for 13 years, and we have more than 33 million people go through the terminal every year, and I’ve never heard of anything like this happening before,” said Metropolitan Airports Commission spokesman Pat Hogan.
The Transportation Safety Administration (TSA), which checks passengers at checkpoints, says that the boy was no security threat as he was screened like any other passenger.
The breach is under investigation and the airline “is working with the various authorities involved,’’ Delta Airlines said.
Reports say the boy was also seen at the airport on Wednesday – a day before he managed to board the flight to Las Vegas.
In fact, on Wednesday the boy took some other passenger’s bag from the baggage carousel, passed through security checks and went to a restaurant in the area to have lunch. He ate the lunch and then told the restaurant staff that he is going to the washroom. He left his bag, went to the washroom and never returned to pay the bill. The bag was handed over to airport security who managed to return it to the waiting passenger.