A flight between Seattle and Orlando was forced to park on the runway at Orlando International Airport and await a heavily armed cadre of police after a child onboard the plane AirDropped a threat to another passenger on Sunday.
The Alaska Airlines flight was delayed by over an hour after the passenger reported the threat to the flight's crew. The flight parked away from the terminal and awaited a police response. Passengers onboard said police surrounded the flight armed with submachine guns and eventually sussed out that the threat was not credible.
“We’re taxiing in and all of a sudden the plane gets interrupted with a peculiar notice that we’re going to park on an active runway for a moment,” one unnamed passenger told WKMG
. “After that, they said there was a threat to the plane and that we are not going to be approaching any terminal for any time soon.”
Passenger Ryan Pruitt told the station that the child's mom was extremely apologetic as the family was escorted off the plane.
“As soon as (the family) got up, it was, like, the saddest thing. The mood just switched because the mom was crying and was, like, ‘I’m so sorry everybody. I’m so sorry,’” they said.
Alaska Airlines released a statement about the grounding.
"After Alaska Airlines flight 16 from Seattle landed in Orlando, it parked remotely because of a potential threat that was later deemed non-credible. Police boarded and cleared the aircraft. The plane continued to its gate and passengers deplaned as normal," they said. "We take safety seriously and we apologize for the inconvenience for our guests."
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