Possible security breach causes shutdown at Anchorage airport

Posted: Sunday, June 23, 2002

ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Security officials evacuated a portion of Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport Saturday morning after a suspected security breach.

Airport security Lt. Dave Tullis said security screeners at Concourse B called about 9:30 a.m. after they suspected a female passenger got into the concourse before being fully screened. When the passenger couldn't be found, Tullis said the only solution was to empty the concourse and re-screen passengers.

''If we can't ensure the concourse is sterile, our only recourse is to empty the area and start over,'' Tullis said.

The concourse was cleared and ready to accept passengers within 20 minutes, Tullis said. But it took about 90 minutes of successfully rescreening the evacuated passengers and admitting new ones before passenger flow was back to normal.

The Federal Aviation Administration control tower recorded no serious flight delays caused by the evacuation.

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