Longhornmaniac From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 3480 posts, RR: 44 Posted (5 years 1 month 3 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 3903 times:
Sorry if the thread title is a little misleading, I wasn't exactly sure what to put. Anyway, I was out at Founder's Plaza at DFW today, watching the various comings and goings (AA Maddog, AA Maddog, AA Maddog, AE ERJ, AA Maddog, AA Maddog etc...). An Air Canada Jazz CRJ-900 took off on 18L, and then less than 5 minutes later, called Regional Approach, saying that it needed to return to the airport to offload a bag for a passenger that didn't board. They said it was somehow missed before they left the gate. Incidentally, it had to hold for about 45 minutes burning fuel before it could land. All of this seems like a dramatic inconvenience for a single bag.
Having worked as a ramper, I've had to do this before, as well, but I was wondering a little bit more about the origin of the policy/regulation. The pilot described it as "company regulation," but what exactly dictates this happening? I'm presuming the fact that it was an international flight had something to do with it (as I seem to recall only bags tagged to an international destination were required to be held off until the passenger boarded...but I could be mistaken).
Is this more than company policy? Is there some federal regulation regarding it? If so, what are the origins of such a regulation?
It is so someone can't plant a bomb in their luggage to take down the plane. Of course if the bomber is on board, it doesn't do much (let alone the cargo). It's a good policy, but it isn't foolproof. I believe this procedure came into use after the Lockerbie bombing.
Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
PHLJJS From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 423 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (5 years 1 month 3 weeks 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 3851 times:
I believe the rule is that if the flight is international and the passenger doesn't board, the bags get off-loaded. If the flight is a domestic U.S. flight, then the bag may fly even if the passenger doesn't. It becomes more of a customer service issue for the airline to find, off-load and return the bag to the customer at that point, although, it could also be a company policy. The thought is that since the bag has been screened, it likely doesn't present a threat and is eligible for trandsport. The International flight issue is probobly a Customs issue or that some countries are hyper- sensitive to security issues.
Starlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17365 posts, RR: 66
Reply 3, posted (5 years 1 month 3 weeks 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 3777 times:
Quoting BMI727 (Reply 1): I believe this procedure came into use after the Lockerbie bombing.
I think it was way before that. I have memories from way back in the 70s of everyone having to get off the plane at Frankfurt Airport to identify their bags before we were allowed to depart. However Lockerbie definitely had an impact.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
golfradio From Canada, joined Jun 2009, 878 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (5 years 1 month 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 3718 times:
I would imagine the policy started being enforced after the AI-182 bombing in 1985. The perps had checked in baggage with CP in YVR on CP flights to YYZ and NRT. The flights connected with AI-182 in YYZ and AI-301 at NRT. The baggage was through checked-in without the perps showing up.
JER757 From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2006, 350 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (5 years 1 month 3 weeks 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 3659 times:
In the UK (I'm not sure about the US, but I'm sure its pretty similar) these rules are known as AAA ('Triple A') regulations: The Accounting and Authorisation of Hold Baggage for carriage by Air.
Basically they state that a bag must not travel without the passenger being on board. i.e. if a passenger who checked in a bag doesn't show up at the gate, the bag must come off. Those are the reason for those long ground delays whilst the loaders hunt through the hold of the plane. Every bag must be matched to a passenger either manually or using a computer system before the plane pushes back. If the aircraft departs and it is discovered that a bag is travelling unaccompanied, the aircraft must return to stand to have it offloaded. Returning whilst in the air seems quite extreme, I bet someone had to explain a few things for that!
The exception is where bags are classed as 'expedite' or 'rush' bags and are travelling unaccompanied. This happens when a bag misses a flight for whatever reason. The bags go through a higher level of security screening compared to standard bags. A security certificate for these bags is signed by the screener, and the bags are listed separately on Load Plans and Loadsheets.
It all came about from Pan Am 103, the Lockerbie bombing. I can't remember the exact story but basically a bag travelled (which contained the bomb) and the passenger didn't.
Although it is an extremely important rule in aviation - i.e. it is practically a sin to knowingly let a flight go a 'bag up' - with the potential for suicide bombers it is perhaps reasonable to assume that one day a bag will travel accompanied, and yet still contain an explosive device. The current security systems in place should prevent this, but in my opinion Triple A has become slightly less relevant with Bin Laden and his psychos at the helm...
jetplaner From Canada, joined Mar 2008, 158 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (5 years 1 month 3 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 3640 times:
Quoting golfradio (Reply 4): I would imagine the policy started being enforced after the AI-182 bombing in 1985
The Air India bombing occurred in 1985, the Lockerbie bombing was in 1988. As I understand it, the terrorists planted a bomb in a suitcase, then sent it unaccompanied YVR - YYZ on CP Air, from which it transferred to an Air India flight from YYZ - YMX - LHR. The suitcase exploded over the Atlantic, killing all on board. This was a joint terrorist attack, the other one involving an unaccompanied suitcase bomb travelling YVR - NRT on CP Air, which was supposed to transfer to another Air India flight. Fortunately, that bag exploded on the tarmac at Narita instead of in the air.
This most likely started the matching bags and pax procedures, IMO. If anyone can elaborate, please do.
swiftski From Australia, joined Dec 2006, 2701 posts, RR: 2
Reply 10, posted (5 years 1 month 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 3520 times:
Quoting PHLJJS (Reply 2): I believe the rule is that if the flight is international and the passenger doesn't board, the bags get off-loaded.
Quoting JER757 (Reply 6): Basically they state that a bag must not travel without the passenger being on board. i.e. if a passenger who checked in a bag doesn't show up at the gate, the bag must come off.
Good rule in theory, although last time I travelled non rev (LHR-JFK-LAX-SYD) my bag flew the JFK-LAX leg the day before me as I got offloaded, and the same for the LAX-SYD flight. Possibly less strict for staff, but I'm sure there are some twisted staff members out there too.