May 20, 2013
‘Miscommunication’ creates Amsterdam plane hijack scare
Miscommunication between a Spanish airline pilot and Dutch ground control caused a hijack scare today that led the Netherlands to send F-16 fighters to intercept a plane, the airline said.
"There was never any danger. There was a lack of communication between the pilot and the tower and the airport has activated the security protocol," a spokeswoman for Spanish carrier Vueling said.
The airline's flight from Malaga in Spain to Amsterdam was surrounded by Dutch security forces on landing at Amsterdam's Schiphol airport.
The Dutch Defence Ministry had sent two F-16 fighters to intercept the airplane after suspecting a hijacking, a Dutch military police spokesman told reporters.
"We are still trying to establish communication with passengers and with the crew," Martijn Peelen, spokesman for the military police, told reporters.
A passenger on board the plane said nothing unusual was happening, Dutch broadcaster NOS reported, quoting the passenger.
"In fact nothing was going on. We had to fly a few rounds. We are now waiting in the plane, the doors are still closed. But there is no hijack," NOS quoted the person as saying.