Jewish Teen's Praying causes Airplane Panic

Published: January 21st 2010

Pic: wikimedia commons


A Jewish teenager aboard a Kentucky-bound airliner using tefillin was the reason the plane made an emergency stop-over in Philadelphia where it was examined by a bomb squad.


The 17-year old’s tefillin caused a misunderstanding with crew members, who questioned him until the captain decided to divert the US Airways Express Flight 3079, which was travelling from New York City.


The teen’s explanation of the prayer ritual to crew members was not enough for the captain to continue to the plane’s original destination.


“It’s something that the average person is not going to see very often, if ever,” FBI spokesman J.J. Klaver told MSNBC.


The flight left LaGuardia Airport in New York at 7:30 a.m., landing without further incident in Philadelphia 90 minutes later where police, FBI officials and members of the Transportation Security Administration met the plane.


The plane was also searched and passengers were questioned.


The teen, from White Plains, NY, was traveling with his 16-year old sister. Neither was held in custody. Both children have been given the green light to resume traveling.


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