All-clear given after shooting scare at New York’s JFK airport | world-news | Hindustan Times
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All-clear given after shooting scare at New York’s JFK airport

Police gave the go-ahead to two terminals at New York’s John F Kennedy International Airport to resume normal operations on Monday after reports of shots fired prompted evacuations and grounded a few flights and diverted a few others.

world Updated: Aug 15, 2016 19:01 IST
Members of the New York City Police Department stand guard at Terminal 8 at John F. Kennedy airport in the Queens borough of New York City on August 14, 2016.
Members of the New York City Police Department stand guard at Terminal 8 at John F. Kennedy airport in the Queens borough of New York City on August 14, 2016. (Reuters Photo)

Police gave the go-ahead to two terminals at New York’s John F Kennedy International Airport to resume normal operations on Monday after reports of shots fired prompted evacuations and grounded a few flights and diverted a few others.

The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey which maintains the JFK airport issued a statement saying, “Preliminary investigation does not indicate shots were fired at JFK. At this time no gun shells or other evidence of shots fired has been found. The terminal was evacuated out of an abundance of caution. Travellers should contact their carriers. There is substantial PAPD and NYPD presence at JFK and LGA. Investigation continues.”

Trouble started after two persons told police they heard what they thought were gun shots. Police went floor-to-floor to clear the airport and ensure there was nothing to be found. Surveillance video from inside the terminal did not show any shooting, CNN reported.

Port Authority spokesman Joe Pentangelo said there were no injuries or arrests.

Hundreds of bags and suitcases were left behind as passengers ran out of the airport. Law enforcement officials say it’s possible that hoax 911 calls and word of mouth led to the panic. Officials are working to figure out exactly what happened.

Police evacuated Terminal 8 around 9:30 pm (local time) Sunday as a precaution after receiving 911 calls about shots fired near the departures area.

A short while later, police closed Terminal 1 after they said they received additional reports of shots fired in that terminal. A highway approaching the airport also was shut down.

In addition to the Port Authority Police, the NYPD had its Hercules strike teams, critical response command, strategic response group, emergency service unit, and patrol cops on scene, New York law enforcement officials told CNN.

At one point, a ground stop was issued due to “security,” according to the FAA command system website.