Germany Airport Closed After Man Crashes Car Onto Runway

Minnie Murray
December 31, 2018

The news was announced by Hannover Police on Twitter, saying "An incident occurred at 15:40, after a man had broken through a gate with a auto and drove to the apron".

Belgium-based journalist Sotiri Dimpinoudis said on Twitter that flights were diverted to other airports while the investigation into the vehicle breach continued.

Police stopped him after several hundred metres, it said.

Police alleged the man was under the influence of drugs when he drove the Polish-registered auto through a gate and onto the apron, German news agency dpa reported.

The man drove his BMW onto the airport apron after forcing open a gate, and was pursued by police until he came to a stop underneath a Greek airline's Airbus A320 that was standing on the tarmac with 172 passengers on board, a police statement said.

In a tweet, Hanover police said officials were able to stop the auto, "overpower" a man and take him into custody.

Takeoffs and landings were halted while police experts examined the vehicle.

No one was hurt in the incident, but flights were suspended for more than four hours.

They think he acted alone.

Airport staff announced flights had resumed at 8.05pm local time (7.05pm GMT).

Police charged that the suspect had tested positive for cocaine and amphetamines, according to local media reports.

Hannover airport is not one of Germany's major hubs. Other tips involved possible extremists surveilling German airports. Flight operations are now suspended.

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