As of 5pm, Tri-State Airport in Wayne County resumed operations. The airport had been evacuated since after 11 this morning.
The Transportation Security Administration reports that two containers of liquid in a passenger’s carry-on bag tested postive for explosive residue around 9:15 this morning. A second test was confirmed at 11:25. TSA is waiting for further testing to determine the exact substance.
NBC News reports that federal screeners found four containers of liquids inside a woman’s carry-on bag during the screening process this morning. Larry Salyers, Tri-State Airport Director, tells WSAZ the woman is of Pakistani origin, lived in Jackson, Michigan and most recently lived in the Huntington area. She is being detained for questioning.
A federal official says the containers were make-up bottles, and it’s not known yet exactly what was inside. However, the official says the woman did seem to have legitimate reasons for traveling and did not fit any suspicious behavioral profile.
The trace analyzers detect minute amounts of explosive material. But they can also give positive readings on items that have come in contact with fertilizer, recently dry-cleaned clothes, and even hot dogs — anything with nitrate compounds.
The flight in which the woman was going to board was on its way to Charlotte, North Carolina with a final destination of Detroit, Michigan.
FBI officials are on scene.
One flight was diverted to Yeager Airport in Charleston.
WV Senator Robert Byrd’s office sent out this statement late Thursday afternoon.
“This is proof positive that it doesn’t pay to scrimp on homeland security in rural areas. We must not discount an airport or a chemical plant just because it happens to be in a rural state. Fortunately, it appears that an event with potential for serious consequences and calamity has been thwarted. If not for the keen vigilance of the well-prepared security personnel at Tri-State Airport, other resources would have been brought to bear including local firefighters, law enforcement, emergency medical personnel, trauma suites at local hospitals, and the entire public health system. All must be fully trained and properly equipped to respond to a variety of disasters,”? said Senator Robert C. Byrd.
We’ll continue to update you on NewsChannel 3 and on WSAZ.com.