Virgin Australia flight to Albury: Man arrested over 'bomb threat'

By @Len_IBTimes on
A man was arrested at Albury Airport over bomb threat
A man was arrested at Albury Airport at around 9:30 a.m. Tuesday soon after a Virgin Australia A330 plane landed from Sydney. Steve Halama/Unsplash

A man was arrested at Albury Airport at around 9:30 am on Tuesday after a Virgin Australia A330 plane landed from Sydney. Some of the 42 passengers on board left their luggage and climbed out of the plane in terror after they were asked to evacuate immediately upon landing.

Reports say the flight crew alerted authorities after the man allegedly made a bomb threat. The threat came in the form of a note on a sick bag.

‘Get out, run!’

Police were on the tarmac to assist passengers and arrest the suspect. Speaking to the media, witnesses in the aircraft said they did not know something was wrong until they landed. Authorities had quickly surrounded the plane, sparking suspicion of trouble among the passengers. Afterwards, someone said, “Get out and run, run, run!”

According to Virgin Australia, it was a passenger who told everyone to "get out and run" instead of wait for the stairs. Due to panic, passengers began jumping down the tarmac, News Corp reports.

Police lauded Virgin Australia for the efficient evacuation of passengers. Albury commander Superintendent Evan Quarmby added that the police managed to secure the site within five minutes due to the communication between the crew and the authorities.

Speaking to ABC, a passenger said the arrested man showed nothing unusual. He was questioned at the Albury police station over a note he allegedly left in the bathroom.

"He sat next to me. He didn't seem drunk,” Wendy Willett told ABC. “(T)here was nothing unusual about him. He read a book most of the flight."

Police have confirmed that the threat was not terror-related. The man is now scheduled to appear in Albury Local Court on July 4. He was granted conditional bail.