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Panic At Newark Airport (UPDATE): Things Get Hairy After Traveler Breaches Checkpoint

Port Authority police converge on Terminal C at Newark Airport.
Port Authority police converge on Terminal C at Newark Airport. Photo Credit: @shenanigans_111

UPDATE: Panic ensued Monday morning after a woman "breached a security checkpoint" at Newark Airport, a Port Authority police spokesperson said.

"Around 10:20 am a woman breached a security checkpoint in Terminal C and PAPD responded," Public Information Officer Abigail Goldring said. "PAPD took the individual into custody, moved passengers onto the street, and conducted a sweep of the affected areas as a precaution. 

"While there was no bomb threat nor shooting that occurred, the disturbance caused significant public alarm to ticketed passengers who consequently ran from the disturbance and exited the terminal through various means," Goldring said.

"No one was seriously injured," she added.

The woman was taken to University Hospital in Newark for an evaluation, Goldring said.

Passengers, meanwhile, were being rescreened and "operations at the 3 affected gates are back to normal," Goldring said.

The airport's public information arm (@EWRairport) initially tweeted at at 10:42 a.m. that a "customer exited through a security door. "PAPD responding and the incident in under control."

Travelers insisted it was more than that.

@theofficebebe: "Worker told us was a possible bomb threat.. REAL under control."

@amannn85: "People were like an uncontrolled stampede running to exit through gate C109 , when others saw saw this ran and ducked under tables. People were out on the tarmac and those coming off the plane at C111 were diverted to exit through the jet bridge stairs"

Some said the terminal was evacuated, while others said only partially.

@TheMattSafer: "People screaming, running, falling down steps....some people were mid check-in and are barefoot outside. 100% total chaos."

Some claimed they were told there was an active shooter. One tweeter even claimed to hear gunshots.

@fr0stfall: "I work here and I’m hiding. There’s police everywhere. What do you MEAN."

@AlanaMJonatMD: "At gate C109, huge panic, everyone hit the floor. No one has been by to check on anyone. Were we at the site of the breach or just the fringe?"

Passengers on planes noted that security doors were shut for safety.

@Matt_Curry: "We’re on the runway waiting to leave . Engines been off for a while Bc passengers who evacuated from terminal c were on the runway behind our plane."

It was over almost as quickly as it had begun.

At 11:01 a.m., the airport tweeted: "The earlier security event has been resolved, and you can return to the terminal."

At 11:04 a.m., @PeekayFunny: "Now everything is ok. Waiting for boarding....Flight delayed."

Minutes later, @Mikey1014G: "We all assumed the worst, but it was over in 20 minutes."

Several passengers reported seeing a woman taken into custody by a number of uniformed officers.

@TheYechiel: "Stop posting false reports about Newark Airport. There was a issue at security, there were lots of cops, it's been contained and flights are boarding (I'm literally on my flight now). It's not shut down, there's no shooter. Stop creating panic."

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