Johannesburg’s OR Tambo Int’l airport evacuated [update]

or tambo evacuated monica kaneko flickr

Johannesburg’s OR Tambo International Airport was on Monday evacuated after an unattended bag was found in the terminal building.

According to eyewitness reports on Twitter, an “explosion” was also reportedly heard around Terminal A’s international arrivals.

Users at the airport corroborated reports of a “loud bang” followed by panic.

According to OR Tambo International’s spokesperson Leigh Gunkel-Keuler, the incident was not a drill as previously suggested.

“As part of the safety protocol and to ensure the safety of passengers and customers in the airport terminal building, people were evacuated from the area,” she noted in a Facebook note.

“The SAPS has now provided airport management with the assurance that passengers and customers can now return to the airport terminal building. From an airport operations perspective, we have returned to normal. However, we do anticipate some flight delays as a result of the evacuation.

“We apologise to clients, passengers, retail concessionaires and all other stakeholders for the inconvenience and ask that they plan accordingly,”she concluded

With more than 18-million passenger movements a year, OR Tambo is the busiest airport in Africa.

This is a developing story…

Feature image: OR Tambo International’s Terminal A arrivals in 2011, by Monica Kaneko via Flickr (CC 2.0 BY-SA, resized)

Andy Walker
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