Beeping Blackberry triggers 'MAYDAY', flight diverts

March 04, 2012 by Sophie

On February 29th, 2012 Air France flight AF2220 Paris-Tel Aviv diverted to Basel due to a "foreign object" on board emitting a "strange noise"

An Air France Airbus A320-200, registration F-GKXF performing flight AF-2220 from Paris Charles de Gaulle (France) to Tel Aviv (Israel) with 124 passengers and 6 crew, was enroute at FL280 about 5nm north of Basel (Switzerland), when upon checking in with Swiss Radar the crew reported they had a foreign object on board and were considering to divert. 4 minutes later the crew declared Mayday, Mayday, Mayday reporting they had some "foreign noise" on board and decided to divert to Basel/Mulhouse Airport (Switzerland/France), where the aircraft landed safely about 20 minutes later.

A replacement Airbus A320-200 registration F-GKXO positioned to Mulhouse Airport and is about to reach Tel Aviv with a delay of 18:10 hours.

Passengers reported a bleeping sound was heard in about the 5th seat row in the cabin, cabin crew was called and tried to determine the source of the bleeping however could not find anything, the sound was considered to originate from a bomb. The captain was informed and decided to divert. The aircraft stopped in a remote area of Mulhouse's Airport, passengers disembarked and the aircraft was searched. Following the search the passengers were told the bleeping sound was the reminder call of a Blackberry which hadn't been turned off.

Air France said the aircraft diverted to Mulhouse due to a technical incident, the passengers were taken to hotels over night and are to continue their journey in the afternoon of Mar 1st.

The airport reported the aircraft was taken to a remote area for isolation according to standard operating procedures, French forces searched the aircraft and discovered the bleeping sound was a reminder call of a mobile phone, that had not been turned off.


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