The Netherlands was placed on high alert with winter storm Ciara set to bring very high winds and heavy showers to the country on Sunday and Monday. The entire country faces a series of Code Yellow and Code Orange weather alerts throughout the day, as wind gusts could reach up to 120 kilometers per hour.
KLM began canceling its direct flights to China due to the outbreak of coronavirus 2019-CoV, the Dutch airline announced on Wednesday. All direct flights between Schiphol Airport and Chengdu and Hangzhou were scrapped beginning January 30, as were all nonstop flights to Xiamen starting Friday.
The airline also reduced its schedule to Shanghai from 11 flights weekly down to seven. The reduced schedule is in effect through February 29.
Dozens of airline passengers spent the first night of the New Year sleeping at Eindhoven Airport after low visibility prevented aircraft from taking off or landing. The country's second largest airport had struggled with fog since Tuesday.
A ground stop was put in place Wednesday afternoon at Eindhoven Airport preventing all aircraft from taking off and landing at the second largest airport in the Netherlands. The problem, due to freezing fog, could continue through midnight, according to a bulletin released by Eurocontrol, the European organization for air traffic safety.
The weather was also causing problems at Schiphol Airport, and to a far lesser extent at Rotterdam The Hague Airport.
Schiphol Airport is believed to have been targeted in a planned terrorist attack that was to take place simultaneously as the Nov. 13, 2015 attacks in Paris. Investigators made the assertion in a 561-page indictment produced by French authorities examining the coordinated assaults that left 130 people dead, according to Belgian newspaper De Standard.
Make sure you consider living in Utrecht if you are moving to the Netherlands. Already voted as one of the best and happiest places to live not only in the Netherlands, but in the whole world, the country’s fourth largest city is an impressive hometown choice.
The court case examining criminal responsibility in the crash of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 will begin on March 9 at the heavily secured court complex at Schiphol airport. The case, officially assigned to the District Court in The Hague, will also provide a live stream of the court hearings, and a press center to accommodate up to 500 journalists and 300 workplaces.
The court has reserved 25 weeks for the trial. In 2020, those dates are March 9-13, March 23-27, June 8-July 3, and August 31-November 13. The court will also hear the case in 2021 from February 1 through March 26.
A massive response to an aircraft boarding at Schiphol Airport on Wednesday evening turned out to be a false alarm, according to the airline involved. The crew of an Air Europa flight to Madrid had already boarded 27 passengers when a pilot accidentally pressed the emergency distress button in the cockpit at about 6:45 p.m., the airline said.
A large contingent of authorities and officers were dispatched to the Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam on Wednesday night because of an incident on an aircraft. "We are currently investigating a suspicious situation aboard an aircraft at Schiphol," said the Marechaussee, a branch of the Dutch military tasked with protecting airports and borders.
The incident was a false alarm, according to airline Air Europa.
Flights destined for Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport were facing mounting delays on Friday night after new troubles arose with the airport's refuelling system. "Arrival rate has been reduced drastically and delays are now extremely high," Eurocontrol said in a bulletin at 8:20 p.m. The organization later said the refueling system was "out of service due to technical issues until further notice."
Thousands of passengers were left with few options at Schiphol Airport as hundreds of inbound and outbound flights were canceled or faced hours-long delays. "The situation is not expected to improve until tomorrow morning," said Eurocontrol on Wednesday just before 4:30 p.m. and again at about 8 p.m.
A ringed seal native to arctic waters was seen lounging on a slip behind a houseboat in Breukelen, Utrecht on Monday night. Experts were concerned the seal could suffer from the hot weather expected week, and might not make it back to the North Sea by itself. People in the Utrecht area were asked to keep an eye open for the seal swimming in the region's waterways.
An investigation into the discovery of cocaine hidden in a flower shipment in January led to a much larger drug bust in April. Ten people were taken into custody who worked for a logistics firm at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam after 160 kilograms of cocaine was found in another flower shipment.
It was not revealed when the arrests took place, but eight of the suspects were still in custody on Thursday.
An unlicensed taxi driver seen soliciting passengers in Schiphol Plaza at the airport was found in possession of a gun, the Marechaussee said in a statement. The man was held in custody at about 4:20 p.m. on Saturday.
Authorities said the 30-year-old was well-known to authorities. He was questioned at the scene and admitted to offering his services as an unlicensed taxi operator, the statement said.
"When asked if the man had weapons or other illegal items, he said he had a weapon on him. A firearm was found in a neck pouch," the Marechaussee said.
High winds were expected all day throughout the Netherlands, prompting the fourth straight day of inclement weather warnings from the national meteorological agency KNMI. Operations at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam showed only a handful of cancellations but dozens of delays.
KNMI issued a code yellow weather alert for Noord-Holland and the Wadden Sea islands, Friesland, Zuid-Holland, Zeeland, and Limburg. Gusts of wind out of the southwest were expected to be between 75 km/h and 90 km/h, the agency said.
Several men were convicted on Monday in connection with a 65 million euro diamond heist at Schiphol Airport in 2005. The highest prison sentence handed down was a seven-year term, even though gemstones worth about 40 million euros were never recovered.
There were over 1,635 kilometers of traffic jams across the Netherlands at 5:05 p.m. on Tuesday, just as the evening rush hour got underway, according to travel association ANWB. A snow storm that started on the west coast in the morning was slowly making its way east, and was still expected to hover over the provinces of Friesland, Groningen, Drenthe, Overijssel, Gelderland, Limburg, and parts of Flevoland and Noord-Brabant past 6 p.m.
Trains scheduled to travel to-and-from Amsterdam Centraal, Schiphol, and stations in the Amsterdam area were scrapped on Tuesday evening due to "a major disruption in the train traffic control systems," national railway NS said in a statement.
A power outage in Amsterdam severely affected operations at the city's Schiphol Airport on Sunday. The problems began early in the morning, with electricity restored by 4:30 a.m., but inbound flights were put on hold, and arrivals were set to be reduced through at least 11 a.m. causing a knock-on effect to the airport's scheduled flights.
Some 67 departures and 66 arrivals were cancelled through 8 p.m., as well as dozens of delays, according to the airport.
A man who was shot by security troops at Schiphol Airport on Friday afternoon after allegedly threatening people with a knife was identified as a 29-year-old man from Den Haag. The shooting happened in the Schiphol Plaza, the airport's primary entryway which also provides access to the train station below.
Three shots can be heard in amateur video recorded in the plaza.
A man acting in a threatening manner was shot at Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport on Friday, the Marechausse said in a statement. The situation was under control and returned to safety following the incident, the military branch announced on Twitter just after 4 p.m.
The suspect was overpowered and apprehended, they said. No further comment was made, but the Marechaussee said it would release further details later.
The Schiphol Plaza was evacuated following the incident.
There is a consistent increase in the police helicopters deployment as a support to the police forces on the ground. According to police statistics acquired by BNR, the police helicopters were mobilized 2,082 times in 2015, while this year they were deployed over 3,121 times to date, an increase of about 50 percent.
The Dutch police have eight helicopters flying mainly from Schiphol Amsterdam and Rotterdam-The Hague Airport. They are mostly used over the Randstad megaregion.
Police in Amsterdam arrested eight suspects connected to a plot to excessively overcharge taxi passengers picked up at Schiphol Airport. In one case investigated by authorities, a Swedish man was ordered to pay 595 euros for a ride from the airport to Amsterdam city center, a taxi fare that normally costs between 40 and 60 euros.
Commuters trying to navigate the Amsterdam area were advised to allow for plenty of extra time if using the highways on Monday evening after a fire in a Schiphol Tunnel passageway led to the closure of both the tunnel and the southbound A4 motorway towards Den Haag. Drivers were told to divert to the congested A2 to Utrecht, and then take the A12 road west as an alternative, adding 30 to 40 kilometers to the drive home.
There were no reported injuries in the fire, but the fire did damage safety systems in the tunnel.