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Bomb scare on Avianca flight bound to El Dorado Airport (BOG) in Bogota on September 19

Reports indicate that on September 19 the pilot of flight 8384 from Guayaquil to Bogota alerted airport authorities of a plausible bomb alert on the plane upon landing at El Dorado (BOG). Subsequently, security personnel carried out pertinent measures and searched the plane for explosives. Authorities later released a statement describing the incident as a false alarm, concluding there is no credible threat. Further reports suggest the alert was triggered by a suspicious or unattended piece of luggage.

Bomb scares in Colombia have been on the rise lately, following bombing attacks in 2017 against security personnel and civilians. In the aftermath of the attack in the Andino Shopping Mall in June 2017, authorities launched a campaign recommending citizens to notify police in the event of encountering suspicious or unattended packages in buildings. Such fears possibly led cabin crew to notify the captain of flight 8384. While under current circumstances bomb attacks in the country cannot be ruled out, militants are not likely to target airports, especially larger ones like El Dorado (BOG) and Medellin’s José María Córdova (MDE). Colombian airports are generally considered among Latin America’s safest, given stringent security measures.

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