A 65-year-old grandmother accidentally caused chaos this week at Brisbane airport by labelling her luggage: ‘Bomb to Brisbane’.
When seen on the baggage carousel, the package was swarmed by police officers and its surrounding area was cordoned off for investigation.
What could have been a disaster, however, turned out to be a simple mistake made by Venkata Lakshimi, who had written ‘Bomb’ because she didn’t have enough space to write ‘Bombay’.
Speaking to Yahoo News, her daughter, Devi Jothiraj, revealed her mum was “mortified” by the accident:
She was pulled into a room and interviewed. My mother told me they thought something was in there and people were panicking. They asked her to open the bag and asked her why it says ‘bomb’, and she said ‘It’s for Bombay!’
The mishap happened while Lakshimi was travelling to Australia for her birthday celebrations. According to Jothiraj, she had been nervous travelling alone and had therefore labelled the origin and destination of her journey. Although Bombay is now officially known as Mumbai, many residents still refer to its old name.
After the confusion was cleared up, Lakshimi was allowed to continue the journey, which she had made as part of her birthday celebrations. Although she was a little shy and shocked after the incident, Jothiraj clarified:
She understands the mistake she made. She can read and understand a little but she didn’t realise it would cause a problem, it went over her head.
Although embarrassing, the mishap is at least a reassuring reminder that airport security is as tight as ever.