bram fischer airport bloemfonein bomb scare grenade

Photo: ACSA / Flickr

Just in: Bloemfontein Airport EVACUATED over ‘bomb scare’

It seems 2022 will be another wild year, then: A bomb scare forced people to evacuate Bloemfontein’s Bram Fischer Airport on Monday.

bram fischer airport bloemfonein bomb scare grenade

Photo: ACSA / Flickr

The Bram Fischer Airport in Bloemfontein, Free State played host to some high drama on Monday, after a 28-year-old male tried to board a domestic flight with a hand grenade in his luggage. The incident forced officials to evacuate the terminal earlier this afternoon.

Bram Fischer Airport evacuated over grenade incident

It’s understood that the suspect, rather nonchalantly, checked his baggage in as normal before x-ray scanners detected the dangerous weapon. Clearly visible on their monitors, security staff summoned the police, who immediately detained the perpetrator.

Bomb scare in Bloemfontein

Passengers and workers at Bram Fischer Airport were ushered out of the terminal for about half-an-hour, before operations were allowed to resume. Bomb disposal staff deemed that there was no immediate threat to anyone, once the suspect had been detained.

SAPS issued a statement on the matter this evening, explaining that the man in custody will be charged with possession of a hand-grenade shell, and interference with airport operations. With Parliament still burning, this incident comes at a sensitive time for the nation.

“The suspect arrived at the airport and reported at the check-in counter where he handed over his luggage to be searched. A security officer placed the passenger’s bag inside the X-ray scanner and the scanner detected the metal inside the bag and the round object was visible on the monitor.”

“The security officer physically searched the bag and found the drill hand-grenade. The police at the Bram Fischer Airport were called to the counter. An immediate decision was taken to activate the evacuation alarm because of the possibility of a threat in the terminal building.”

“The Bomb Disposal Unit were also summoned to the scene to handle the evidence and sweep the building. The building has since been declared safe and operations continued as normal, and the suspect has been arrested and detained.”

SAPS statement