San Francisco airport terminal evacuated

Wednesday, January 30th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

(SAN FRANCISCO, California) - Thousands of people were evacuated Wednesday morning from a terminal at the San Francisco International Airport due to an apparent security breach.

Possible explosives residue was found on a man's shoes as he passed through a security checkpoint, but the man "got lost in the crowd," said Mike McCarron, assistant airport director. The incident occurred around 6:50 a.m. PST, McCarron said.

Authorities are searching for a white male in his 40s. McCarron said he didn't know if the man fled from the area.

He said the man went through a random check, and security personnel detected "a possible type of residue they wanted to investigate further."

The residue could have been from explosives or could have been something as innocent as traces of nitroglycerin heart medication, he said.

Terminal 3, home to United Airlines flights, was shut down, and passengers were told to leave the area. About 30 gates, all belonging to United, were affected.

People could be seen standing around, braving the chilly temperatures outside the terminal.