Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Coffee spill diverts United Airlines flight, Transport Canada says

A United Airlines flight from Chicago to Frankfurt, Germany, was diverted to Toronto this week after the pilot dumped a cup of coffee on the plane's communication's gear. The unwanted liquid triggered a series of emergency codes, including one for a hijacking, according to Transport Canada, the agency that regulates transportation in Canada.

"With the help of their company dispatch staff, the flight crew was confirmed the trouble to be a NAV(navigation)/communication issue and not a valid code 7500 (for a hijacking or unlawful interference)," Transport Canada said on its website.

Flight 940 at first was going to return to Chicago, but then diverted to Pearson International Airport in Toronto where it landed without incident around 10 p.m. Monday.

United had little to tell about the coffee spill that led to the diversion, and did not acknowledge that the caffeinated beverage had anything to do with it.

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