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Los Angeles-bound flight diverted to Chicago for 'security concern'

(KTLA) — A United Airlines flight headed from New Jersey to Los Angeles was forced to make an emergency landing in Chicago Wednesday morning due to a “security concern.” Passengers and local media reports say it was an alleged bomb threat.

United 1533, a Boeing 787, departed Newark International Airport just after 6:00 a.m. local time. 

Sources told one Chicago outlet that a passenger was “physically tangled” with crew members and others aboard the flight.

Rashad Robinson, a passenger on the flight, posted on X that the bomb threat was found written on a note in a lavatory. Local news outlets say a preliminary police report confirmed that allegation.

The flight diverted to Chicago’s O’Hare Airport, where it landed safely at 7:44 a.m. local time and passengers were removed from the jet.

According to local reports, a bomb-sniffing K-9 found a suspicious bag, and a robot was deployed to move it away. Police were reportedly questioning the passenger who checked the bag.

Passengers are seen disembarking United 1533 after it was diverted to Chicago O’Hare Airport on Feb. 21, 2024. (Rashad Robinson)

United Airlines shared very limited information in a statement to Nexstar’s KTLA.

“United flight 1533 diverted to Chicago this morning due to a potential security concern,” the airline said. “The flight landed safely and met local law enforcement upon arrival. Customers deplaned and we expect the flight to depart for Los Angeles later this afternoon.” 

The FAA confirmed the flight was able to land safely after “the crew reported a security issue.”

Chicago Police confirmed to Nexstar that officers did respond to, and have since cleared, the scene, adding the FBI is now investigating.

Source: Fox 8 News Channel

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