Hundreds of passengers were evacuated over the weekend at John F. Kennedy International Airport and LaGuardia Airport because of issues with security.
On Saturday, June 23, Transportation Security Administration Agent Alija Abdul Majed reportedly had his metal detector unplugged at Terminal 7 at JFK Airport. He did not realize how long the detector was left lifeless, but around 9:45 a.m., the Port Authority evacuated the entire international terminal so people could be rescreened.
The TSA began rescreening passengers around 10 a.m., said agency spokeswoman Lisa Farbstein in an emailed statement. She declined to answer questions about whether or not there would be a change in procedure and if Majed was still employed.
Steve Coleman, a Port Authority spokesman, declined to comment on the ordeal altogether, but he did comment on the fire that broke out at LaGuardia Airport on June 24.
Coleman said it was an electrical fire that started around 5 p.m. Because of the smoke, passengers had to be evacuated from Terminal 1.
Farbstein said the fire was found in an outlet under baggage screening equipment at Terminal C East Checkpoint. The electrical fire did not produce flames, only smoke.
“All passengers were evacuated and emergency personnel responded,” she said. “Passengers were rerouted to Terminal West Checkpoint.”
By 5:50 p.m. people were allowed back into the terminal, Coleman said, but he added that the cause of the fire is still being investigated.
Farbstein said she had seen inaccurate reports about TSA officers getting injured in the fire, but that none were hurt.
Three PA police officers were treated for smoke inhalation at New York Hospital, Coleman said, adding that they were all released.
Five planes were delayed because of the fire, said Anthony Black, a spokesman for Delta Air Lines. The delays for each plane ranged from less than ten minutes to more than 30 minutes, he added.