Heathrow alert after man carrying rucksacks runs into path of planes on runway

A man was arrested today after running into the path of a plane carrying two rucksacks at Heathrow in London, the world's busiest airport...

Heathrow security alert after man carrying rucksacks runs into path of planes on runway

13th March 2008
Daily Mail

A major security investigation was under way at Heathrow Airport today after a man believed to be carrying two rucksacks scaled the perimeter fence and ran into the path of a plane.

Controlled explosions have been carried out on both bags and no explosives were discovered. Police have not yet ruled out the possibility that the attack was terrorist-related.

The intruder ran onto the North runway at just after 2pm. Armed police sped to the scene and immediately surrounded him. He was bundled to the ground as other officers kept their weapons raised.

Officers keep their weapons trained on the intruder as he is bundled to the ground

A Metropolitan Police spokeswoman said: "A man was arrested and is currently in custody.

A bag has been recovered."

Airport workers said they saw the man throwing two rucksacks over the perimeter fence before jumping over himself. Police have confirmed that at least one rucksack was recovered.

There were no explosives found in the rucksack. Police said "personal effects" were found in one of the bags.

Some 20 emergency vehicles and specially-trained sniffer dogs were all at the scene.

Scotland Yard said anti-terrorist officers were aware of the incident but it was being dealt with by local police at the airport.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown said: "I'm satisfied everything is now being done to ensure security at Heathrow is intact. We are determined to protect all passengers and all staff who go through Heathrow and every other airport."

The security breach comes on the day before the airport was due to officially open its new terminal, and just 18 days after the airport's security was breached by climate change protesters.

Greenpeace protesters walked on to the runway late last month and climbed on to a Boeing 777 before unfurling a banner in protest against the airport's expansion.

Police lead the man away after he ran into the path of a plane

Greenpeace and climate change protest group Plane Stupid denied any involvement in today's incident.

The Queen is due to attend the opening of the 4.3 billion Terminal five at the UK's biggest airport tomorrow.

One theory for the incident is that the protester was bent on wreaking havoc before the Queen's arrival.

Buckingham Palace said the Queen's visit to Heathrow to officially open the new 4.3 billion Terminal 5 tomorrow would go ahead as planned.

A Heathrow aiport spokeswoman said: "Airport police swiftly apprehended a man near the northern runway of Heathrow this afternoon.

The man scaled a fence and ran onto the north runway

"The police arrested a man at about 2pm within the airport perimeter."

Though the southern runway remained open throughout the incident, the northern runway was partially closed for several hours this afternoon as police secured the area. It has now been fully reopened.

The alarm was raised after two members of the public called 999.

The North runway was initially fully closed but then partially re-opened following the breach.

Reports claim controlled explosions have been carried out on both bags

BAA said passengers should contact airlines to find out whether flights have been delayed or cancelled.

It said it might have to make a small number of cancellations.

Workers at Heathrow said there were suggestions that the man had jumped over a fence before running towards the runway.

The airport is understood to have been testing security today ahead of the official opening.

The state of the art new building is a major landmark in the airport's expansion.

Maybe he saw a problem with one of the wheels of the plane and figured this was his time to shine, grabbed his tool bags and ran to fix it.

Being nice just doesn't pay off these days *shrugs*

Similar Threads

Heathrow Airport Taxi
by Andem | Oct 31st, 2009
Is 12 too young to be a runway model?
by Locutus | Sep 19th, 2007
no new posts