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Atlanta Airport Shut Down Due to Bomb Threat

bomb threat

Parts of the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport were closed on Saturday while the authorities investigated bomb threats against commercial jetliners passing through the airport, the world’s busiest.

An FBI spokesman, Stephen Emmett, said officials would search two planes: one belonging to Delta Air Lines and another operated by Southwest Airlines.

Asked whether officials believed the threats to be credible, Mr. Emmett replied: “That’s the best way to characterize the threats.”

A military spokesman, Preston Schlachter, said separately that officials had scrambled a pair of fighter jets from McEntire Joint National Guard Base, which is in South Carolina, to escort the planes into Atlanta.

Mr. Schlachter said the military had ordered its planes into the air as “a precautionary measure” after officials “received word of a possible bomb threat on Twitter.”

Delta Flight 1156, from Portland, Ore., to Atlanta, was one of the flights affected. A spokesman for the airline, Morgan Durrant, said passengers were moving from the plane, which was being held on the tarmac, to buses.

Southwest said in a statement that “a security situation” had caused Flight 2492 to be “taken to a remote area of the airport where customers and the aircraft are being rescreened.”

Atlanta’s airport, just south of downtown, is a hub for Delta, which is headquartered here. More than 94 million passengers traveled through the airport in 2013, airport statistics show.

New York Times


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