One woman’s makeup bag caused more than 300 flight cancellations at Munich Airport last week.
The woman had liquids that were too large in her carry-on luggage when she went through airport security, according to One Mile at a Time. Instead of throwing out the bottles, she opted to return to the check-in desk and check her bag. About 15 minutes later, she returned to security. But somehow, she managed to pass through the checkpoint without ever having been screened.
By the time airport management realized what had happened, the woman could not be found. She was already on her flight.
It set off a chain reaction that would affect more than 32,000 people passing through the airport that day.
The entire terminal shut down and everyone in the satellite building had to evacuate. Flights remained grounded for more than seven hours; about 330 flights were and cancelled and about 700 people spent the night on camp beds stranded in the airport.
According to Deutsche Welle, the inspector in charge of the checkpoint was “distracted by a conversation with colleagues” at the moment the woman slipped past security.
“From what we have learned so far about the incident, we don’t envision taking legal action against the passenger,” an airport spokeswoman told The Local Germany. However, three employees of the state-owned airport security company have been fired.
The cost of the entire snafu is estimated at $1.2 million, the Munich airport chief said.