The company told the BBC News Monday that a crew witnessed what was likely the reentry of the North Korean intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) into Earth's atmosphere last week. The missile soared to a height of 2,800 miles, ten times higher than the worldwide space station, and then came nearly straight down.
The isolated and impoverished North has staged six increasingly powerful atomic tests since 2006 - most recently in September - which have rattled Washington and its key regional allies South Korea and Japan.
After the North launched dozens of rockets and ballistic missiles that year, South Korea complained to the United Nations Security Council and global aviation and maritime organizations about the lack of warning.
Their crew say they saw what appeared to be the test missile on re-entry as they flew towards Asia from the US West Coast.
According to the Associated Press, the crew reported seeing the missile re-enter the atmosphere over Japan during a flight from San Francisco to Hong Kong on November 29. While it has a theoretical range greater than 8,000 miles, the missile only traveled a distance of about 600 miles from the launch point.
"Though the flight was far from the event location, the crew advised Japan ATC (air traffic control), according to procedure", the spokeswoman said, adding that flight operations had remained normal and was not affected, the Morning Post stated.
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Korean Air said it was unclear how far the apparent missile re-entry was from its own planes, whose flights originated in Los Angeles and San Francisco.
The launch of the Hwasong-15, the missile North Korea tested last Wednesday.
Since the North Korea regime does not announce its missiles tests and does not have access to worldwide civil aviation data, the launches come without warning for commercial airliners and pose a potential risk to planes, the BBC News noted.
North Korea has developed ballistic missiles powerful enough to reach their intended targets, including those as far away as the continental USA, and nuclear warheads for those weapons, but the North has struggled with re-entry vehicle technology, which ensures that the warhead survives the flight.
"Singapore Airlines is aware of the reports on the sighting of the North Korean missiles and is closely monitoring the situation", a spokesperson told Channel NewsAsia.
While few believe the regime's program is complete, the threat posed by the new missile is significant, warned United States Defense Secretary Gen. Jim Mattis.