An abandoned car forced an evacuation of La Guardia Airport’s Terminal B Thursday night, shortly after 11 p.m. Police, including the NYPD’s Bomb Squad, and emergency responders rushed to the scene, after reports that a suspicious car had been left parked on a ramp outside the terminal, its driver ditching the vehicle and running away.
The Bomb Squad investigated and deemed the vehicle, and the area, safe about an hour later. Authorities towed the car, but it’s unclear if the driver was ever tracked down, says CBS 2.
In a city still on edge after the Chelsea blast, travelers described a scene of disorder and confusion inside Terminal B — though not nearly as chaotic as the false reports of a gunman in JFK Airport last month, which turned out to be people cheering for the Olympics. Traffic was shut down in and around La Guardia in Queens, and some travelers grabbed their luggage and tried to leave by foot, with vehicles at a standstill. A few travelers were left stranded on the tarmac during the investigation, but most of the airport’s operations were winding down for the night.
La Guardia is open and back to normal Friday morning. This latest scare is one of a huge spike in calls to authorities about suspicious activity or unattended packages in and around the city. The NYPD received 400 calls in the first 48 hours after the Chelsea explosion; by Wednesday, that number doubled to 800. And parts of Queens and Long Island already had a major scare this week, after an enormous boom freaked out residents. It might have been F15s flying overhead because of the United Nations session, but the mystery hasn’t been entirely solved.