LAX: Traffic Accident Sparks False Report of Gunshots Fired

8:29 PM PST 11/22/2013 by THR staff

UPDATED: Armed police officers swarmed Terminal 4 at the airport after an anonymous caller reported a man with a weapon was at Gate 45.

A traffic accident outside Terminal 5 at Los Angeles International Airport sparked false reports of gunshots fired Friday night.

Just before 7:30 p.m., LAX police responded to a report from passengers that shots had been fired at Terminal 5.

According to a statement from Los Angeles World Airports, which runs LAX, police have since determined a multiple-car accident occurring on the lower/arrivals level roadway of Terminal 5 caused a loud noise, leading people to think shots had been fired. Passengers left Terminal 5 of their own accord out of caution. The accident was caused by someone with a medical condition, with one person being injured.

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"While this was occurring, an anonymous caller to Airport Police reported there was man with a weapon at Gate 45 in Terminal 4," the statement continued. "Officers responded to that location and found nothing. Out of an abundance of caution, Terminal 4 was fully evacuated so that the terminal could be fully searched and cleared."

Street traffic was diverted, and flights at Terminal 4 have been temporarily disrupted. Delta Airlines and American Airlines are reporting delays. Shortly before 10 p.m., the official LAX Twitter account tweeted, "No ground delays or ground stops for flights in T4 (American) but incidents caused flight delays. Please check w/ ur airline for info."

Photos circulating on Twitter revealed travelers on the floor as police officers with weapons drawn swarmed the terminal.

The incident comes three weeks after the Nov. 1 shooting at LAX, which left TSA officer Gerardo I. Hernandez dead and three injured. Law enforcement officials say Paul Anthony Ciancia, 23, carried out the shooting.

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