Cape Town – An SAA plane has been involved in a second
"hijacking" incident in as many months.
Flight SA 417 was en route from Johannesburg to Port Elizabeth on Tuesday when the airline received the alert.
The plane was met by armed police and other emergency response teams, Algoa FM reported.
"SAA is deeply concerned about a false hijack alert
involving one of its aircraft," said spokesperson Tlali Tlali.
"The origins of the false hijack notification [on flight SA 417] remain
unknown at this stage and will form subject of the investigation which will be
Colin Naidoo of the Airports Company South Africa (Acsa) said: "The
aircraft landed safely and the police had to do the necessary checks with the
aircraft and at this stage the investigation will be conducted by the Civil
Aviation Authority and the airline concerned."
According to Algoa FM, the emergency played out the same time that former US
president Bill Clinton's plane landed for his brief visit to Port Elizabeth.
In July the national carrier experienced a similar incident when airport
authorities surrounded one of its planes, claiming that a hijacking-attempt
alert had been received. Passengers were forced to sit on the tarmac at OR
Tambo International Airport for 40 minutes after landing.