The Irish Times crime correspondent Conor Lally has put together a time-line for the Slovakian explosives story. And he’s been talking to the company who received the telex message the Slovakian Department of Interior said was sent to Dublin airport on Saturday. From the Irish Times report.
The company who received the message, Servisair, said at no time was it warned the material was dangerous or represented an emergency. “We receive hundreds of these cita [telex] messages every day,” company spokesman Tony Brunskill told The Irish Times. He said the pilot of the Danube Wings plane had been informed before take off from Poprad-Tatry airport in eastern Slovakia that the material was on board. Mr Brunskill said the Slovakian airport police should have immediately telephoned the Dublin Airport Authority. “Had we been aware of the situation we would have told the DAA.”
Mr Brunskill said the aircraft should not have departed with the material on board and insisted the Slovakian authorities had not followed security procedures. At the very least they should have telephoned Servisair in Dublin to check the message was received and press home the urgency of the situation. His colleagues in Dublin were under the impression the material was a substance that mimicked explosives and was used only as an aid to train sniffer dogs. Mr Brunskill said the pilot should have refused to fly the aircraft until the material was removed.
And the telex message in question..
The telex sent to Servisair reads: Dear Colleagues, please be informed that we have received info from police department of (Tatry Airport) that there is forgotten sample of explosive material in baggage on bord of flight no V58230.
The sample of grey colour is in plastic bag (size 5x5cm) in the rare part of black backpack (under harnesses) in hold no 3 or 4. The sample is not dangerous, it is only used for dog training. It is not able to cause explosion nor fire (no power source of detonator is included) Pilot in command has been informed about this sample by ATC (air traffic control). We would like to kindly ask you to return that sample with flight no V58231. Thx for coop.