LAX Explains Erroneous Terminal Evacuation Notice

Some electronic monitors inside the Tom Bradley International Terminal displayed the message briefly after an airline contractor activated it accidentally.

Los Angeles World Airports, the operator of Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), has posted a statement explaining how an emergency evacuation notice was incorrectly displayed on some monitors inside the Tom Bradley International Terminal on April 22.

LAX Airport Operations received calls from airline personnel at 9:47 p.m. and had removed it by 9:54 p.m. after investigating what had happened, according to the statement.

The Los Angeles Times reported the airport staff feared a hacker might have been responsible, but it turned out the erroneous posting was accidental rather than malicious.

The statement says in its entirety:

"(Los Angeles, California -- April 22, 2013) An erroneous emergency terminal evacuation notice was displayed for a few minutes at the LAX Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT) this evening after an airline contractor accidentally activated the message. No additional notification measures (such as an audible alarm) were activated and there were no reports of anyone leaving the terminal. At 9:47 p.m., LAX Airport Operations received phone calls from airline personnel that the electronic monitors located behind the TBIT ticketing counters were displaying a pre-programmed emergency terminal evacuation message. After the mistake was discovered, airport staff removed the message from all the monitors by 9:54 p.m. After investigating what caused the erroneous posting, LAX Airport Ops and Information Technology staffers reported that an airline contract employee, who is authorized to access the display system, was programming airline check-in information into a set of monitors for a particular flight when he accidentally activated the pre-programmed emergency terminal evacuation message. The airport's Information Technology staff will be looking at ways to ensure this accident does not happen again in the future."

LAX is the nation's third-busiest airport with more than 600 daily flights. Los Angeles World Airports is a department of the city of Los Angeles.

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