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Crikey! Crew corrals crocodile in cargo hold on plane

By Aaron Cooper, CNN
updated 12:09 PM EDT, Tue September 25, 2012
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Qantas is investigating how the crocodile escaped its container
  • The flight arrived in Melbourne, Australia, from Brisbane
  • Cargo handlers wrangled the reptile and secured it safely, Qantas says

(CNN) -- Cargo handlers unloading bags from a Qantas Airways flight last week got quite a surprise when they discovered a crocodile loose among the luggage.

The reptile somehow got out of its container during the two hour flight from Brisbane, Australia, to Melbourne September 17.

"An incident involving a live animal in the cargo hold of a Qantas aircraft is being investigated," airline spokeswoman Lauren Blank said in a statement to CNN.

"The animal was quickly and safely secured when the aircraft arrived in Melbourne. The investigation is focusing on whether it had been loaded appropriately on delivery to Australian air Express (AaE)."

Australian air Express, which did not respond to CNN's requests for comment, is an air freight carrier which transports cargo on its own aircraft as well as Qantas and Jetstar passenger flights.

According to the freight carrier's website, animals including reptiles, lizards and snakes, can be transported on aircraft, but "the locking mechanism on the door of the container and any hinges must be secure and strong enough to prevent any possibility of escape."

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