Airlines reroute flights after Iran downs US military drone
DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES >> Airlines rerouted flights Friday to avoid airspace near the Strait of Hormuz after Iran shot down a U.S. military surveillance drone there and American aviation officials warned that commercial jetliners could be mistakenly attacked amid tensions between Tehran and Washington.
Local long-haul carriers Emirates and Etihad were among those that changed flight routes in an area that is home to major hubs of global air travel. That could further imperil the bottom lines of Persian Gulf longhaul carriers.
“The threat of a civil aircraft shootdown in southern Iran is real,” warned Opsgroup, a company that advises airlines, citing as an example the downing of a Malaysia Airlines jetliner over eastern Ukraine in 2014, killing all 298 aboard.
The Federal Aviation Administration warned of a “potential for miscalculation or misidentification” in the region.