United flight 971 en route from Rome to Chicago O’Hare diverted to Shannon, Ireland after a bomb threat was discovered in one of the aircraft’s lavatories. The crew declared an emergency at approximately 12:45 p.m. off the coast of Ireland.
The Boeing 767-300 aircraft – with 214 passengers and crew onboard – landed in Shannon at 1:47 p.m., one hour after the emergency was declared. You can see the flight path here, with the plane circling before landing.
United released a brief statement,
“Additional security screenings will be performed on all customers and baggage, and we will work to get customers on their way to Chicago as quickly as possible.”
The diverted flight was scheduled to depart Shannon at 4:00 p.m. but has since been canceled due to security screening disruptions. A tweet confirmed customers and crew will be rebooked on a flight tomorrow.
The Irish Times reports local police are taking the threat seriously:
Investigating gardaí [police] began the lengthy process of taking handwriting samples from each of the passengers in an effort to establish whether one of them had written the message. All the passengers’ hand baggage was also removed for security screening while luggage in the cargo hold was also expected to be examined.