A passenger running late for his flight set off a fire alarm at an airport in a desperate attempt to delay his plane - prompting a full-scale evacuation.
The man triggered the alarm at London City Airport to stop a British Airways flight to Frankfurt leaving before he could board.
Police attended the incident yesterday and the culprit was questioned before being released.
A spokesman for the airport said: "A late-running passenger trying to stop a flight to Frankfurt triggered the fire alarm.
"The alarm was triggered around 2.45pm and a full evacuation carried out.
"The source was immediately identified and staff and passengers were able to re-enter the building around 15 minutes later."
He added: "Once an aircraft has started its engines there's little you can do to get onboard if you're late, short of clinging to the undercarriage - which we obviously wouldn't recommend.
"Lovely though Frankfurt is, the person who triggered the alarm will probably, with hindsight, wish they had taken it on the chin and re-booked as the matter was taken up by police."
Asked whether the passenger had managed to make his flight, the airport's Twitter feed said: "They were questioned and released, we believe they continued their journey with a much longer delay as a result."
Christophe Wuyts wrote: "Fire alarm at London city airport.
"Passengers on tarmac."
Scotland Yard said officers attended but it was down to the airport to decide what action to take and the man was not arrested.
A BA spokesman said: "A passenger due to travel on a flight to Frankfurt arrived late and was unable to travel.
"The subsequent incident was dealt with by London City Airport."
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