A WestJet flight from Las Vegas to Victoria, B.C. landed safely after receiving a bomb threat, the fifth aimed at the airline in the last week.
Flight 1709 arrived at the Victoria airport just before 6 p.m. PT Thursday about two hours after the threat was received, James Bogusz with the Victoria Airport Authority told CBC News.
WestJet tweeted that the threat was "deemed not credible" but the flight was screened out of "an abundance of caution."
Screening on #WS1709 was done out of an abundance of caution. Aircraft has been cleared. RCMP to proceed w/ criminal mischief investigation.— WestJet (@WestJet) July 3, 2015
Confirm YYJ received bomb threat against our aircraft #WS1709. Worked with regulatory & law enforcement agencies and deemed not credible.— WestJet (@WestJet) July 3, 2015
A total of five threats have been made against Calgary-based WestJet, and one against Air Canada in the past week. All have been hoaxes.
"Safety remains our top priority. We will continue to be vigilant to keep our guests and our crews safe," WestJet tweeted. "This week’s false threats are all criminal investigations, and we will support investigators as they seek out those responsible."
However, the National Post reported that there was confusion over which law enforcement agency would take the lead in tracking down the person or people behind the false alarms.
There's no indication if investigators suspect the same source is behind all the threats, and WestJet cautioned against rumours and speculation.
Delaying or diverting flights, and using up police resources to search planes for dangerous materials is costly, former FBI investigator Brad Garrett told CTV News.
He said such threats tend to come from unhappy former workers or clients with a grudge.
- On Canada Day, WestJet Flight 722 from Vancouver to Toronto was diverted to Calgary after a bomb threat.
- On Tuesday night, a threat was made against WestJet Flight 323 from Toronto to Saskatoon. It landed safely and everyone on board left using the aircraft stairs.
- On Monday night, six passengers were injured during an emergency evacuation of a WestJet flight in Winnipeg. It was flying from Edmonton to Toronto.
- On June 27, a bomb threat diverted a WestJet Halifax-Edmonton flight to Saskatoon.
- On June 25, a bomb threat against an Air Canada flight led to the evacuation of the St. John's Airport.
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