Flights have been delayed out of Melbourne Airport this morning after a security breach forced Qantas flights to be evacuated before takeoff and more than 1000 people to be security screened again.
“A passenger appears to have inadvertently passed from an ‘unscreened’ area to a ‘screened’ area of the airport in Melbourne,” Qantas said in a statement.
“As a precaution all Qantas operations have been put on hold and passengers in the terminal are being rescreened, which is causing delays to some services this morning.
“Safety is our number one priority, but we know this disruption is causing some inconvenience for our passengers and we apologise for that. We are investigating how this incident occurred.”
— Dennis (@DennisCricket_) October 10, 2022
Flights from Melbourne are expected to be delayed throughout the morning and flow-on delays are expected around the country.
One passenger who was on a 6am flight told Today his flight had been “a minute” from taking off before authorities boarded and told everyone the exit the plane.
“The pilot pretty much told us straight away that there was somebody who slipped through the terminal,” he said.
“I am glad they have evacuated the terminal to make sure everyone is safe, because it is definitely worth a few hours of waiting.”
At 7:30am Melbourne Airport released a statement on the security breach that said screening of passengers in T1 had resumed.
“Delays are expected this morning but Qantas staff are working hard to get everyone to their destinations,” the statement said.
This is the second time such a breach has happened in Australia in recent weeks. More than 200 passengers on a Qantas flight out of Sydney last month were forced to be re-screened when it was found a passenger similarly eluded security on the way in.
Airport chaos has really become synonymous with 2022 at this point. Maybe my mum was onto something when she forced us to arrive at the airport five hours early every time.