Haggis sparks bomb scare at Birmingham Airport


Airport security staff were left a little red-faced after suspecting a passenger was carrying explosives in his hand luggage - and finding it was actually just a haggis.

Ian Blake was stopped as he was passing through Birmingham Airport on his way from Inverness to see a friend in Dublin.

He had packed the MacSween's of Edinburgh haggis as a gift for his friend, but it was picked up by the security scanner, even though his sgian dubh - the knife worn as part of the traditional Highland dress - was not.

Mr Blake told the Scotsman: "I was going to visit an elderly friend in Dublin recently and as she is originally from Edinburgh I thought she might like a MacSween's haggis as a taste of home.

"I was only going over for two nights so I just had one small bag. As I was going through the scanning device, airport security staff pulled me out of the line and said 'We think you have a suspected plastic explosive in your luggage, sir'.

"Then they took out the haggis and started examining it. I don't think it was the plastic wrapping that was suspect, I think it was the actual consistency or denseness of our national dish.

"Maybe they thought I was disguising plastic explosive as a haggis?"

According to the Edinburgh News, he added: "When they read the labelling and so on they realised that it was just a sonsie haggis and I was allowed to go on my way. I think they were a bit embarrassed. I thought the whole thing was highly amusing but security staff are usually pretty po-faced and they didn't really see the joke.

"The ironic thing was I was also carrying my sgian dubh. It was inside a pair of shoes in my bag. I thought the scanner might pick up the metal on the sgian-dubh but it didn't. It was just the haggis that they thought might be dangerous."

According to the Independent, a spokesman for Birmingham Airport did not apologise for the incident, highlighting that the safety of passengers is their number one priority.

Airport security gone mad?

Airport security gone mad?

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