Airlines Face Fake Bomb Threats, United Delay and Stock Declines

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Tuesday morning was a time for some minor airline industry irritations, including a brief delay in flying at United (UAL), fake bomb threats that led to a search of a US Airways aircraft and stock market declines.

The United delays, attributed to faulty operation of the carrier's dispatching system,  began around 9 a.m. EDT. The carrier resumed flying about 40 minutes later.

"We began delaying flights at approximately 8 a.m. central time to ensure aircraft departed with proper dispatching information," said United spokesman Charles Hobart. "We resumed departures around 8:40 a.m. and we are accommodating our customers to their destinations."

The Federal Aviation Administration briefly issued a ground stop, which was lifted after a few minutes.

Also Tuesday morning, in an unrelated matter, bomb threats targeted at least five flights departing or arriving in the United States, according to an NBC News report. The threats, which were phoned in, weren't found to be credible.

However, a US Airways flight from San Diego was searched by a police bomb squad when it landed in Philadelphia around 6:15 a.m.

The threat was called in to the Transportation Safety Administration. The aircraft was taken to a remote runway, according to Philly.com.

"The 88 passengers and five crew members were taken off the plane and placed on buses for the trip to the terminal while police officers and dogs searched the aircraft," Philly.com said. "They sounded the all clear after finding nothing."

Police, the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security are investigating the incident.

In trading late Tuesday morning, United shares were down 27 cents to $56.04. American (AAL) shares were down 32 cents to $43.86. Delta (DAL) shares were down $1.16 to $43.19 after the carrier reported May passenger revenue per available seat mile numbers that were below guidance.

 

 

This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author held np positions in the stocks mentioned.

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