Passengers evacuate after false alarm at RDU
Posted July 17
Morrisville, N.C. — Passengers temporarily evacuated Raleigh-Durham International Airport on Monday night, after an accident triggered an alarm in Terminal 2.
According to RDU officials, a baggage tug used to move luggage hit a sprinkler head in a baggage sorting area under the terminal, rupturing a water pipe.
The accident triggered an alarm, and travelers inside the terminal saw flashing lights and heard an automate message that warned of an emergency, according to officials.
Officials said many passengers left the terminal just before 8 p.m. as a precaution, but were back inside in about 20 minutes.
"They just kept saying 'an emergency, an emergency' and eventually they said there was a fire and we needed to evacuate and so we all went out the doors and the lights were still flashing and people were still coming back in. So, we waited for a few minutes, but when the airline people started coming back in, that's when we figured we can go back in too," said traveler LeAnn Abrahamson.
Some water was released in the baggage sorting area as a result of the ruptured pipe, but no bags were damaged because they were inside closed carts, officials said.
There was never an actual emergency at the airport and RDU employees were able to reset the alarm.
Airport officials said they do not anticipate any flight delays as a result of the evacuation.