Airport ordered evacuated again

Friday, March 8, 2002

LOS ANGELES -- A suspicious item detected by a screening machine Thursday morning forced another evacuation at Los Angeles International Airport, the latest in a series of shutdowns at the facility.

The evacuation affected only the ticket counter area in one terminal and was lifted after less than 20 minutes.

On Monday, travel at the nation's fourth busiest airport was disrupted for three hours when screeners spotted a replica hand grenade in luggage. Last Thursday, an unplugged metal detector triggered a five-terminal evacuation that led to 400 flight delays and 10,000 passengers being rescreened.

The latest evacuation came after a screener detected a suspicious item at a ticket counter, airport spokeswoman Gaby Pacheco said.

Explosives experts determined there were no explosives, and no one was arrested, Campos said.

An hour earlier, a bomb squad and FBI agents had responded to a threat aboard a Varig Brazil airliner that had just landed in another part of the airport, Pacheco said. The airliner was on a flight from Rio de Janeiro to Los Angeles. The nature of the threat was not disclosed.

The plane was being examined at a remote area of the airfield, she said.

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