‘Ottawa’ WestJet Flight Arrives in Ottawa Day After Threat Prompts Landing in Thunder Bay
Hundreds of passengers who evacuated their Ottawa-bound WestJet flight in Thunder Bay on Wednesday finally arrived safely in Ottawa one day after a caller warned there was an explosive device aboard the passenger jet.
The Vancouver to Ottawa flight was rerouted to Thunder Bay after the plane was identified as the target of a “non-specific” threat, authorities said.
Flight WS142 was originally scheduled to touch down in Ottawa at 11:45 p.m. on Wednesday. Weary passengers finally arrived in Ottawa at 4:26 p.m. on Thursday. Even then, that rescheduled flight was three hours late.
The airline had reported that the flight landed safely in Thunder Bay at about 10:30 p.m on Wednesday. Thunder Bay police said in a statement that “125 passengers and the crew … were safely escorted off the aircraft.”
According to a Twitter post, the passengers were told to leave their belongings on the plane and leave with their hands over their heads.
Information about the “possible explosive” onboard the was received by the RCMP, who are now investigating. No specific information on where the threat originated has been released.
Thunder Bay police conducted an investigation, which included speaking with passengers and crew of the flight.
West Jet said in an emailed statement Thursday evening that authorities “asked us to hold the plane so they could conduct a thorough search, off load the baggage, search it, and screen all guests. As you can imagine, it would take some time and given the nature of the incident, this was all done with an abundance of caution before loading our guests back on the aircraft this afternoon.”