Mistaken Reports of Gunfire Set Off Chaos at LAX

It was actually a car crash; police also got false report of gunman

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Nov 23, 2013 7:31 AM CST

(Newser) – A sign of just how on edge people at LAX airport remain three weeks after a gunman went on a shooting spree there: A car crash last night led to reports of shots fired and the evacuation of two terminals, reports NBC Los Angeles. Someone also phoned in a false report of a gunman inside one of the terminals, though it's not clear whether it was a prank or someone genuinely confused amid the chaos.

“People were diving behind counters at the restaurants," a witness tells the LA Times. "Then people ran and evacuated very quickly." At that point, police arrived with guns drawn to secure the area. When the dust settled, police explained that it all began when a woman lost control of her SUV outside Terminal 5 and hit several other vehicles. Those nearby apparently confused the echoing sounds for gunfire. Authorities say about 4,600 travelers were affected in some way, mostly through delayed flights, reports KABC-TV.

Airplanes sit on the tarmac at Los Angeles International Airport.
Airplanes sit on the tarmac at Los Angeles International Airport.   (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
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