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British Airways Pilot Stabbed, Held at Gunpoint During Layover in South Africa

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A veteran pilot at British Airways was reportedly attacked while on a run with a fellow BA crew member in the South African city of Johannesburg. (aeroxplorer.com) More...

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BDaleR
Byron Russell 35
Not surprised. When I returned to South Africa in 2017 for the first time in 40 years security was a major issue everywhere. We were met at the jetway in Joburg as we deplaned by someone from our tour operator who walked us through immigration and helped retrieve our luggage. He walked us to the parking lot where he handed us off to our driver. Our flight was delayed and arrived at around 11 PM. The driver drove us to our hotel with no stops on the way at traffic lights because of the risk of carjackings. We didn't leave the hotel grounds except in the company of my cousin and his wife who took us to a safe area for lunch. At the end of our visit we stayed in Cape Town for a few nights. The hotel was very nice but we asked if there was a restaurant nearby that we could visit for dinner. The staff walked us to a locked gate on the property where a staff member from the restaurant across the street met us and walked us to the establishment. When we were done the restaurant called ahead and the process was reversed to get back into our hotel. The only time we were allowed to wander about on our own was at the Victoria and Albert Waterfront during the day. We spent our last night in a hotel at Oliver Tambo Airport in Joburg before flying back. We watched the local news and learned that while we were incountry a tour group from the Netherlands that had been planning on spending several weeks in SA visiting the game reserves, etc., had their bus stopped on the way from the airport to their hotel by what appeared to be police. It was just a ruse. Armed men boarded the bus and took everything of value including passports. The Duch embassy and the SA tourism office worked to get them back home in a few days. Enjoy your vacation in South Africa.
bchandl13
Brian Chandler 11
It's south africa, nobody should be surprised. Scrape away the top 5% of the country and it's an impoverished hell hole.
roy1001
Roy Miller 15
I left about 12 years ago. I have duel nationality but would never go back even for an all expenses paid luxury holiday. It broke my heart to leave but I valued my life more than the sun and the scenery.
jbermo
jbermo 6
I recall staying at a luxurious Intercontinental hotel when in Nairobi. A beautiful city by day with well-dressed men, women, and children everywhere . . . but when after nightfall? After nightfall, hotel personnel would station armed guards on the roof, and also wrap the hotel's entrance door in chains. They would gladly unwrap the door if you wanted out, but all was a nightly ritual nonetheless.
yr2012
matt jensen 5
They do that in Guatemala too
avionik99
avionik99 10
Anyone surprised by this?
CrtMori
Crt Mori 5
I never thought it is that dangerous. It's good to get some view about daily life in other countries. Thanks for the commenters to also further explain the situation, much appreciated.
JC86Pilot
Jay Cee 11
None of the celebrities (Peter Gabriel call your office!) who advocated so passionately for ending Apartheid will be stepping up to take the blame for South Africa's descent into a violent tribal nightmare.
jimjallen
Jim Allen -4
I wish I knew more about the current situation in SA so I could have an informed opinion. What I’m hearing is what I hear in the US all the time about democratically run cities but yet the same applies everywhere regardless of party in power.
ua1kbrad
ua1kbrad 4
The U.S. cities that have descended into hellish nightmares have all been controlled by Democrats for decades.
VictorRichardson
I live in Botswana and drive to South Africa regularly sometimes on Business and sometimes to visit friends and I have never had a problem. There are of course areas to be avoided but that goes for lots of countries throughout the world. Just have to use a bit of common sense, I would think twice about wondering round my home town (Sheffield, UK) city centre late at night.
gfonternel
Gary Fonternel 12
Law abiding and peaceful South Africans truly appreciate the way the rest of the world intervened in a sovereign and lawful country only to result in this bloody debacle. Thanks “free world” who are now showing nothing but a deafening silence at the daily atrocities in present day South Africa. What a bloody joke.
Cat3508
Neil Ward 16
Saw the writing on the wall in the early 70's and got out. My sister is still there & her life is hell. The indigenous populace have now got what they wanted, and I hope they enjoy it. A beautiful country gone to the dogs. Wont say any more, as I get too emotional.
gfonternel
Gary Fonternel 7
I hear you Boet.
It’s a crying shame.
I left end of 1993.
I’ve never been back.
AlanGlover
Alan Glover 4
It's true.

Virtue signaling liberals who do not have to live with the consequences of their actions (although this is catching up to all of us around the world) are responsible for this.

When you ignore the rule of law, the bad folks are emboldened.

Does no one remember "Peace in our time"?
meshawfly
CRAIG MESHAW 4
The best years of my life was the 50's and early 60's! If we prefer a civilized society, we are racists! Any statistics on crime in the beautiful country of China especially along the Li River? Freedom there is short but they do have law and order and the work ethic!
Nooge
Nooge 4
When you ignore the rule of law, the bad folks are emboldened as you see in all the rallys

A lot depends of if all the Insurrectionists are held to live with the consequences of their actions
AlanGlover
Alan Glover 2
Bet you were upset with the 2 billion in damage and the two dozen dead during the BLM riots.
patbuckley
pat buckley -4
My thoughts exactly - murdering scumbags like Edward Kennedy led the libtard charge.
Nooge
Nooge -9
We will soon find out who the scumbag was who led the Trumptard charge on Jan 6

Of course you will bend over backwards to ignore it

Lock him up !!!
sledogpilot
Duane Mader 1
I remember the summer of 2020 when buildings in DC were burned
AlanGlover
Alan Glover 1
Read Trump's speech that day.
brentaustinlee
Brent Lee 6
Gosh, imagine that. How unusual for Africa. Quick, send them a few million$ taxpayer dollars. 💸
AlanGlover
Alan Glover 2
True.

Several trillion has been wasted in Africa. The poverty levels remain about the same. No wonder. Giving money for nothing provides the incentive to beg and eschew personal responsibility and general liberty.
usrepeaters
Rob Palmer 2
I visited Guatemala in '69, and it was wide open. We were only told to avoid anything that looked like a demonstration. Main thing I liked were luxury hotel rooms for $3 a night (I stayed at the Ritz). Their coffee is great too; much milder. I even went to a wedding party at the Guat Club. Went to Antigua and thru an Army checkpoint enroute, but no problems.
mgsegal
Mark Segal 8
Jo' berg was a dangerous city long before the fall of Apartheid, so a number of comments here lamenting "the past" are off-base relative to the context of this article. But the question is - is this a newsworthy story? The same could happen in so many cities around the world, not to speak of the daily mayhem of gun violence in the USA - it dwarfs any urban crime anywhere in the world.This comment is not intended as "what-aboutism" - rather it's just meant to situate this incident in a broader context of the kind of reality in which we live, sad to say.
JC86Pilot
Jay Cee 10
There may have been crime during Apartheid, but there is anti-white genocide now.
fly1ron
Ron Butler 4
bULLSHIT!!!!!
patbuckley
pat buckley 6
It was nothing like it is now - I lived there in the 50's and early 60's and it was nowhere NEAR as violent as it is now. Regarding your off base comment about daily mayhem of gun violence in the USA? Bullcrap.
jimjallen
Jim Allen 2
Hold it... "daily mayhem of gun violence in the USA"? Sounds like someone that gets their information from the news. As a person that lives outside one of the busiest cities in the world (NYC), I have yet to hear this occurring at JFK or Newark, or any major US cities. There are bad spots, undeniably, but no one has stooped to this level yet. We already have documentation on on some paramilitary groups such as the one that tried to kidnap the governor of Michigan. By no means is it as systemic as the news makes it appear.
AlanGlover
Alan Glover 7
And THAT Michigan deal was an FBI sting.
michaeladamczyk
Michael Adamczyk 2
33 shooting in Chicago over the weekend. You must get your news from CNN....
mgsegal
Mark Segal 2
Up to July 5th there have been 3791 murders in the US. Regarding mass shootings, as of June 30, at least 416 people have been killed and 1,355 other people have been injured in 340 shootings. This is data you can verify from normally reliable sources, not appearances invented by the media.
AlanGlover
Alan Glover 5
How many murders by knives? They are much more prevalent than urder by firearms.

So it's not the guns.
JC86Pilot
Jay Cee 9
When was the last time an entire busload of tourists was robbed in the USA? Most violence in the USA is inner city gang-bangers shooting each other in drug disputes.
mgsegal
Mark Segal 5
Apart from the shootings in schools, synagogues, churches, night clubs and super-markets that is. But reverting to the original point: airline staff like anyone else could be victims of hold-ups etc., in just about any major city you can think of, so I was just puzzled as to why this hits the news and why commenters seek to link it to the ending of Apartheid. Over and out.
michaeladamczyk
Michael Adamczyk 2
My first trip to South Africa was in 1985, and I walked around outside the Sun Hotel in Joberg at 10 pm, no problem.

Walking there today at noon puts you at risk...
jimjallen
Jim Allen 3
That’s what I’d like to know as well.
bchandl13
Brian Chandler 2
Most mass shootings in the USA are in liberal third world city slums and it's just gang bangers shooting up the rival block. Those stats are loaded in the way they calculate and include everything when many aren't relevant to the point they're trying to present.

This is of course by design from leftist media, and anyone with a brain can see right through it, but obviously you're not one of those people, Mark.
jimjallen
Jim Allen 1
And? What does that have to do with two guys going for a run in an area they weren’t supposed to be in and got caught up in a paramilitary operation. The two are not equivalent.
mgsegal
Mark Segal 3
The parent article says: "the area of Johannesburg in which the pilot and cabin crew members were staying is supposed to be one of the safest areas of the South African metropolis. Melrose Arch features numerous shops, restaurants, and leisure spots, all of which are patrolled by security guards around the clock. " The article says nothing about them running through a paramilitary operation.
jimjallen
Jim Allen 1
That’s my bad., I was combining the subsequent post with the article which made it sound even worse. My apology.. but the argument still stands.. people from other countries watch the news and believe that the entire country is either gang bangers or rednecks and everyone is armed. I don’t own a gun, I have no need to own a gun but I have no problem with a responsible person owning a gun. I don’t believe that 2A was meant to cover the individual right to carry.. it’s the result of a long lobbying campaign by the NRA.
jimjallen
Jim Allen 4
Sorry.. I make a point not to include politics in my posts.
AlanGlover
Alan Glover 3
You can think all you want but the second amendment is clear.
jimjallen
Jim Allen 1
No politics, but of course people have to add their point of view. I apologized and if I could go back and update the post, I would. I can't.
mikehe
In the USA, they would more likely all be shot.
mikehe
This sounded like our visit last month to San Francisco in California USA. A descent into disarray. We knew about South Africa, but SFO is now off the list. Glorious pace to shit-hole in ten years flat.
AlanGlover
Alan Glover -2
Thanks, Nazi Pelosi.
skyeagle
It’s an avoidable situation that clearly requires the use of common sense and a clever thinking.
We don’t know much about the incident. It appears that the” captain was held at gun point and then stabbed ?”and apparently no shots were fired?
However the layover for crew members should be limited to rest within the scope of a security, safety , a secure area of the hotel and not to to put oneself in a dangerous environment and/ or situation.
Not only in South Africa. It’s been happening all over the world .There were many situations and stories of crew members being robbed, assaulted or even raped .
Do not be a victim partners , stay safe so you can fly back home in one piece.
“ please , prepare for take off “
mgsegal
Mark Segal 1
Finally a voice of sanity and relevance. You are correct. Added to which, the airlines are well aware of the security situations in all of their destinations, and they advise their crews - even have rules - about how to minimize the risk of victimization wherever they fly. Is it likely that these staff members ignored the advice or the rules? As you said, not much information to rely upon.
skyeagle
Greatly appreciated Mr Segal , your thoughts, expressions and discussions are very accurate.
As you stated discussed subjects or issues should be relevant to actual stories and not to overflow to a discussion that has nothing to do with the an article different from political conversation.
ChriLennard
Chris Lennard -5
thank god he didn't walk into a US school....
AlanGlover
Alan Glover 5
Gun-free zone, pal.

THAT'S what attracts them.
fly1ron
Ron Butler 2
AMEN BROTHER
jimjallen
Jim Allen 0
Everyone is over in the other thread debating global warming and maybe more of them should be focused on this.
azuresc
Lanny Word -4
You can always count on the FlightAware comments section to be full of racist drivel. Oh how surprising that you found going to SA so shocking for the first time since 1977. 😮 It seems like there was plenty of violence and crime then but it was just focused on people that didn’t look like you so you didn’t notice or care.
AlanGlover
Alan Glover 5
Do tell. South Africa was as violent as it is now back during apartheid?

Just like the war in Ukraine at the moment, you don't have to be a Putin fan to know that Zelensky is not one of the good guys.
azuresc
Lanny Word -4
I think your white hood is showing. Do you even understand what Apartheid is? I Guess you thought the streets were safer in nazi Germany and under Mussolini’s rule in Italy.
The simple fact that you threw Putin and Ukraine into the conversation pretty much answers that question.
jimjallen
Jim Allen 3
Sad part is the streets probably were safer in Germany and Italy. It's a running joke that I have no idea if there is a basis in reality - but "Mussolini made the trains run on time". It's easy to have order in a totalitarian state where the punishment is immediate execution..
AlanGlover
Alan Glover 3
Again, not for Gypsies, Jews, communists (doesn't REALLY bother me ;)) and anyone remotely darker than white but for white Germans it was tikkity boo....Until the RAF, RCAF and especially the USAF showed up.

It was the deal with the devil (Stalinism) that is to this day doing us in.

We defeated National Socialism (more or less) but a far greater and more dangerous foe were allied with the West, infecting our politics to this day.

Democrats apologize for (or deny the existence of) antifa and blm, both marxist fronts and in the case of blm, admittedly so.

Let's be clear about who supports who and for what they stand.
AlanGlover
Alan Glover 1
Not for Jews, that's for sure.

I find it delightful that people who claim to be anti-racist and anti-fascist are the same people who believe in racist crt and support the authoritarians running the current US admin and those harbingers of fairness and non-violence, pantifa....Now morphing into trantifa the armed wing of the groomers currently in favour with the WEF set.
AlanGlover
Alan Glover 1
Oh, and, what does authoritarian Putin and authoritarian Zelensky have to do with the price of tea in China.

Depending on the flavour of the day, one is ok by you while the other is the devil.

Let's be consistent here.
D4D77
D4D77 -8
Prediction that New Zealand and Australia will go the same way given time.
alanhewat
Alan Hewat 2
No comparison. Look up the crime figures in those countries compared to SA or even the US or UK before "predicting"
AlanGlover
Alan Glover 4
Precisely a great comparison.

Just look at how bad it has gotten in places that have while attacking law-abiding citizens who object to the authoritarian state enforcing ridiculous vaxx mandates and lockdowns allow and actually protect actual violent protestors of the very system that gives them the right to protest in the first place.
LynnGoss
Lynn Goss 1
I doubt that. The difference is the constituency of the population: the civilized vs the savage.
gfonternel
Gary Fonternel -1
They’re certainly pushing for it.
Crime in NZ with regular shootings and smash and grab ATM heists is at an all time high. Pathetic lack of response to the lawlessness from the lousy labor government.

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