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The Secret Code Pilots Use When A Flight Is Being Hijacked

The Secret Code Pilots Use When A Flight Is Being Hijacked
Jesse Tabit

In case of an emergency situation where a commercial flight is hijacked, pilots have a secret code that they use to communicate with air traffic controllers. Sent silently through a transponder, pilots enter 7500 – a distress code that indicates a hijacking or illegal interruption. The exchange is called “squawking.”

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View Comments (2)


  1. itsMoe

    August 17, 2017 at 6:48 am

    Couldn’t you at least have done a cursory search on the internet about squawk codes? That would’ve let you to the wikipedia article ( ), and you could’ve provided a little background and made it look like you actually researched the topic. Even for blog standards, this is pretty bad. And the code is hardly secret, it’s an international standard.

  2. kb9522

    August 17, 2017 at 7:10 am

    The term squawk is not limited to this situation. A squawk is also assigned by ATC prior to departure so that they can identify each aircraft in the air. 7500 happens to be reserved for hijacking situations . There are others also… 7600 for comms failure, 7700 for general emergencies, 1200 for VFR flights. And it’s definitely not a secret.

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