17 October 2003

Terror Alert on Planes

Headline news from Sky News - Witness the event: "TERROR ALERT ON PLANES

All commercial aircraft in the United States are being searched after bags filled with a clay-like material, bleach and boxcutters were found on two flights.

The items were discovered in the toilets of two Southwest Airlines planes that are now on the ground in Houston and New Orleans, officials said.

A note in both packages indicated the items were intended to challenge security procedures.

A search of all aircraft, within 24 hours, was directed by the Department of Homeland Security and its Transportation Security Administration.

The airline said the bags were found during routine maintenance on the plane in New Orleans on Thursday.

The items were 'intended to simulate a threat', Southwest said in a statement.

A similar discovery was made in Houston on Thursday during routine inspection of another aircraft.

The company examined all of its 385 aircraft and nothing else was found.

The 19 al-Qaeda operatives who hijacked planes and crashed them on September 11, 2001, used box cutters as weapons.
Last Updated: 18:58 UK, Friday October 17, 2003"

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