Terminal at Miami International Airport Reopens After Bomb Scare

Bomb squad investigation Sunday night is second security incident related to airport in same day

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    Members of the Miami-Dade bomb squad were called to terminal E at Miami International Airport Sunday night after a passenger admitted to carrying a suspicious item in his luggage, police said. (Published Monday, Mar 18, 2013)

    Members of the Miami-Dade bomb squad were called to terminal E at Miami International Airport Sunday night after a passenger admitted to carrying a suspicious item in his luggage, police said.

    Miami-Dade Police Department officials confirmed that the terminal was evacuated before the bomb squad deemed the item safe.

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    "It was evacuated by them, it was silent, it was eerie," said Greg Balestreri, who was forced to leave the terminal. "Everybody was out, the only people in there were police, and they were pretty firm about getting everybody out."

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    A MIA spokesperson confirmed that when asked, a passenger admitted to carrying a suspicious item in his luggage. For the safety of those at the terminal, police and Miami-Dade Fire Rescue responded.

    "It was crazy, I feel like everyone is testing the system," said traveler Emily Bahamande.

    The bomb scare was the second incident involving the airport in a matter of hours. Earlier in the day, it was passengers on United Airlines flight 1294, traveling from Newark to Miami, who had to deal with a safety scare.

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    "We move away from the gate and a few minutes later, the pilot says, 'Sorry everyone, we need to go back to the gate for a minor check of something,'" said Shari Sentlowitz, who was traveling to Miami for business.

    It would prove to be more than a minor check. The plane returned to Newark Liberty International Airport. As an investigation ensued, Sentlowitz tweeted to keep her loved ones in the know. "De-planing in groups of 20 to be sniffed by dogs," one tweet read.

    The flight was supposed to get in after noon. It arrived about three hours later. Reportedly, a passenger was upset he had been bumped from his flight and allegedly claimed his checked bag, which was already on the plane, had a bomb in it.

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    The man was arrested, but the stunt caused some passengers on the United Airlines flight to miss their cruises in Miami, and unnecessary stress for all.

    "Think before you speak. I'm sure he's thinking this wasn't worth it," said Sentlowitz about the ordeal.

    She missed out on some quality time with family, but is grateful authorities and the airline took the threat seriously.

    "I just wanted to spend a little more time with my family down here that I miss, but I'm thankfully safe," she said.

    Terminal E reopened at MIA after 10 p.m. and Miami-Dade Police were interviewing one man. No arrests had been made as of Sunday night.

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