Scoot 16, Declaring An Emergency
Yesterday, what was supposed to be a relatively run-off-the-mill mundane Thursday evening at Changi Airport played out into a dramatic moment as a Scoot Boeing 787-9 made an emergency landing on Runway 02R whilst being escorted by fighter jets.
From the pieces of information that we know, another bomb threat was made on Scoot Flight TR16, a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner flight from Singapore to Perth, Australia. Readers might recall this mirrored a similar incident just a year ago, when a Singapore Airlines Airbus A350-900 had to make an emergency landing at Changi due to a bomb threat onboard.
The aircraft, registered 9V-OJF, took off from Singapore's Changi Airport at 4.11pm local time as TR16, before making a slight left turn to head southward on a 150 degrees heading. According to FlightRadar24, as TR16 was approaching the Bangka Islands, the aircraft slowed before making a 180-degree turn back towards Changi. According to news outlets, a bomb threat allegedly made by a 30-year Australian man prompted the flight crew to make the prudent decision to turn back to Singapore.
After passing the Lingga Islands, the pilots turned northward towards the South China Sea, where there were placed in a series of holding patterns which lasted for approximately an hour. During this time, a pair of RSAF F-15SGs rendezvous with the aircraft and prepared for an armed escort back to the safety of Changi Airport. At 6.00pm local time, TR16 was vectored out of its holding pattern and placed on a final approach sequence into Changi. While the aircraft was making its approach into Changi, dozens of aircraft arriving for the evening rush hour return were placed on hold at south of Tuas and the South China Sea, resulting in a massive backlog of the aircraft that would not be cleared for a few hours. Finally, at 6.25pm, TR16 landed on Runway 02R. In-flight videos and amateur videos shot from the threshold of Runway 02R showed the F-15s escorting the beleaguered aircraft all the way to the runway.
After turning out on the A5 intersection to Taxiway Alpha, like in SQ3, TR16 taxied to the end of Alpha, before turning onto a holding area via B11. There, airport police and security met the aircraft and apprehended the instigator of the mid-air crisis. Subsequently , other passengers were disembarked, and the aircraft was taxied back to the airport terminal 2 hours and 30 minutes later.
The Singapore Police Force has opened an official investigation into the incident. Updates will be provided through this article on any further updates to this incident.