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Categories of Emergencies

Alerts 1, 2 and 3

The Houston Airport System classifies emergencies according to alerts and conditions, which fall under one of five categories:

Alert 1:
A disabled aircraft on the ground which is not life-threatening and will not cause any major damage (i.e., flat tire, steering failure, etc.)

Alert 2:
Airborne aircraft with a bomb threat, faulty landing gear, engine fire, low hydraulic pressure, no flap landing, engine shutdown or any factor that could prevent a safe landing.

Alert 3:
An aircraft crash, a fire involving aircraft on the ground, an imminent crash upon landing or gear-up, an aircraft involved in an accident on or near the airport, etc.

Conditions 1 A, 1 B and 2

Condition 1-A:
A bomb threat against an aircraft on the ground or baggage on the aircraft, or baggage to be loaded aboard an aircraft.

Condition 1-B:
A bomb threat to a structure or anything other than an aircraft or baggage.

Condition 2:
Skyjacking of an aircraft or terminal building.

In the event of a bomb threat on an aircraft or building, it is understood that the aircraft will be directed to the primary bomb search areas as designated by the airport's emergency plan. If a bomb threat causes evacuation of a terminal or other airport building, safety perimeters will be established. The responsibility of establishing the restricted areas into which the news media or other unauthorized personnel will go will be determined by the Houston Airport System and enforced by the Houston Police Department (HPD). If an immediate danger does not appear to exist and the Houston Airport System deems it reasonable, media representatives may request access into an evacuated area with the understanding that they enter at their own risk and then only after coordination with Houston Airport System HPD, HFD, Communications Director and Operations representatives.

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