American Airlines Flight 136 from Los Angeles to London Heathrow was supposed to have left at 9pm last night.
Instead, the plane returned to the gate, and passengers were held on the aircraft for three hours (initially being told there was a “maintenance issue”) before being disembarked and told their journey would now be delayed until 1pm local time today.
Looks like some joker prevented a flight from leaving Los Angeles International Airport yesterday, by choosing to name their Wi-Fi hotspot something that was bound to raise eyebrows.
Did they choose “Bill’s iPhone” or “Free WiFi”?
No. They chose “Al-Quida Free Terror Nettwork” (sic).
When a passenger spotted the curiously-named wireless access point was listed as available for Wi-Fi connection via their smartphone, and alerted a flight attendant, the chances of the plane leaving on time evaporated.
Read more about the incident in this report from ABC 7 Eyewitness News.
I don’t know what’s worse - the poor spelling used by whoever dreamt up the Wi-Fi hotspot name, or the fact that they were offering an unencrypted connection.
One thing is clear. If a real terrorist wanted to disrupt an air flight they don’t have to go to the effort of sneaking in explosives or phoning in a bomb threat. They can just create a Wi-Fi hotspot with a suspicious-looking name.
Because a real terrorist would use such a hotspot name, right? Sigh…