Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 16 September 2014

Ulster airport staff ban Green Lantern man's stag mask

A Londonderry man's weekend plans were left in tatters after airport security confiscated his homemade superhero mask which they said could be used to conceal his identity on board the plane, writes John Mulgrew

Ryan Reynolds - as Green Lantern
Ricky Kyle (23) was left without his superhero's trademark mask during his stag do in England
Ricky Kyle (23) was left without his superhero's trademark mask during his stag do in England
Ricky Kyle (23) was left without his superhero's trademark mask during his stag do in England

Ricky Kyle (23), was due to don a Green Lantern costume, complete with trademark mask lovingly made by his mum, for a stag do in Rugby, England. The theme, was dress as your favourite superhero. But the student's plans hit a snag when staff at City of Derry Airport confiscated the mask last month, claiming it "could be used to conceal his identity" while on board the flight to Birmingham.

"I went through security and they asked if I had a laptop, I said I had a Kindle," he said. "But as they were going through, they asked did I have anything else, and I joked and said I had a superhero mask. Another staff member came over and said, 'I can't let you travel with that as it could be used to conceal your identity'".

Ricky said he couldn't believe what was happening.

"I was like, 'really, are you really going to take it'? But I wasn't going to cause a scene. I still wore the costume. There was another Green Lantern there and he had a mask, so it was disappointing."

He said his mother was "pretty devastated" having put so much work into the eye mask.

"My friends all found it hilarious. I understand to some extent why they did it – it's a sign of their security levels," said Ricky.

"But it's just a plastic mask. I did say, it's a costume for a stag – but what else could I do. It would be good advice not to take your superhero masks with you, and if you are a superhero – check it in."

A City of Derry Airport spokesperson said it did "not provide specific details of its security procedures."

factfile

The Green Lantern is a superhero character from DC comics. Characterised by his green body suit and mask, he brandishes a 'power ring' which gives him incredible powers. The Green Lantern was recently subject of a film starring Ryan Reynolds.

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