Robbers operating within the perimeter fence of the Murtala Mohammed International Airport in Lagos on Tuesday evening attempted to burglarize a Ghana-bound CRJ jet, the latest attack upon an aircraft preparing for takeoff. The incident occurred a few hours before a Delta Airlines aircraft which departed for Atlanta returned to Lagos after one of its engines caught fire.
It was learned that the burglars opened a cargo door of the CRJ aircraft, tore up the cargo hold bag holders and tried to steal passenger bags but the experienced pilot, recognizing what was happening, unleashed hot gas on the thieves, scaring them away.
The incident, however, forced the aircraft to spend two additional hours on the ground after the police anti-bomb units were called in to check the aircraft for safety. Each passenger on board also had to undertake a luggage identification before the flight finally departed.
In the past few weeks, there have been similar attacks on some aircraft at the airport as they prepared to take off.