Councilman Wants Closer Look At LAX Communication For Incident - New York News

LA Councilman Wants Closer Look At LAX Communication During Incident

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Los Angeles, CA -

(FOX 11 / AP) City Councilman Mike Bonin requested a report on how airport officials communicated with stranded airline travelers following Friday's shooting at Los Angeles International Airport.

"While the public safety response to the incident was fast, fierce, and effective, there were gaps in communications with the passengers and a perceived lack of adequate support for those that were stranded," Bonin wrote in a motion.

He said travelers who were evacuated from terminals or left stranded due to flight cancellations complained that they were left in the dark about how long they would remain evacuated, when they would be able to return to the airport, where to find their family or friends and how to get to their luggage and vehicles that were abandoned when the shooting broke out.

The motion, which has been referred to the Trade, Commerce and Tourism Committee, asks airport officials and the Airport Commission to report back in 45 days.

Below is the Los Angeles World Airports statement on Terminal 3 response and recovery efforts.

The multitude of complexities involved in the initial response to an active shooting scenario at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), one of the world's busiest airports, involves the coordination of multiple local, state, federal agencies and first responders.  While the main objective for Airport Police and other public safety responders was to immediately neutralize the threat, protect lives and provide life saving measures for the injured, it was also critical that potential secondary threats be ruled out.

The safety and security of passengers, employees and others was the first priority.  Before being able to allow people back into the Central Terminal Area (CTA) and the terminals, it was necessary to have law enforcement clear, and declare safe, every LAX terminal and every parking structure. 

While time consuming, it allowed airport Operations to begin to take the necessary steps to manage the needs of the thousands of people evacuated from terminals, sheltering in place in terminals and those on planes that continued to land at LAX. From the start of the incident around 9:30 a.m. through midnight on November 1st, an estimated total 1,550 scheduled flights with an estimated 167,050 passengers were impacted. 

There were many logistical and operational challenges, but airport employees created and executed plans for the recovery of flight operations, CTA and terminal repopulation.  In just over 24-hours, the entire airport was fully operational, including Terminal 3, the scene of the tragic shooting.

Over the next several months, Los Angeles World Airports will put the response and security efforts under a microscope to identify what went right and where we can improve.  While no amount of training can prepare airport employees and first responders for every situation during an emergency, the incident in Terminal 3, like every incident that disrupts airport operations, provides us an opportunity for lessons learned. 

We will make any recommended changes and adjustments to emergency management and security plans so that in the future we can and will be even better prepared.

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