A Northwest Airlines 757 bound for Dulles International Airport from Seattle made an emergency stop yesterday in Minneapolis, where the passengers disembarked while bomb-sniffing dogs searched the plane and luggage for explosives, airline and police officials reported.
No explosives were found during the stopover, which was prompted by an incident at the Seattle airport yesterday in which another Northwest Airlines flight returned from the runway to the boarding gate because of the nervous behavior of an unidentifed passenger. The plane was searched and a dog detected traces of nitrate on the passenger's luggage, Seattle police said.
They said the passenger, a 29-year-old man who said he was from New York City, had arrived in Seattle on a Northwest flight from Anchorage and was arrested on a fugitive investigation charge, which allowed police to hold him for 72 hours while confirming his identity.
The Dulles-bound aircraft, Flight 78 with about 180 passengers and seven crew, landed in Minneapolis when officials became concerned that it could be the plane that carried the man from Anchorage to Seattle, officials said.
They said no explosives were found on the plane, and it was allowed to continue to Dulles after a two-hour stopover.