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United airliner diverted on security concerns

A United Airlines flight from Atlanta to San Francisco was diverted for security reasons to Dallas but the aircraft was secure and it was diverted out of an abundance of caution, a U.S. Transportation Security Administration spokeswoman said.
/ Source: The Associated Press

Federal authorities diverted a San Francisco-bound United Airlines jet to Dallas as a precautionary security measure on Monday after finding an unclaimed BlackBerry on board.

Officials had also found and removed an unidentified backpack from the jet before it left Atlanta, said Transportation Security Administration spokeswoman Yolanda Clark. She described the jet, United flight 351, as secure and said it was diverted to Dallas “out of an abundance of caution.”

“The aircraft is secure,” Clark said. She said there was no indication that the hand-held computer was being used as an explosive device or trigger.

The flight was diverted on the fifth anniversary of the Sept.  11, 2001, terror attacks.

Authorities decided not to send military fighter aircraft to escort the jet, as is routine during an emergency, said Lt. Col. John Cornelio, a spokesman for U.S.  Northern Command.