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Falling signs mistaken for gunfire causes panic at Cancun International

Cancun, Q. R. — UPDATED: Dozens of people inside Terminal 3 of the Cancun International Airport made a run for it Monday after the report of a blast. Emergency 911 sent police after receiving calls of gun fire inside Terminal 3.

Members of the National Guard, along with police, were quick to respond to the report, arriving at the airport just before noon to find some people running and others hiding in nearby bushes.

ASUR, the airport’s managing company said in a statement that “security protocols established for these issues were applied, bringing together the Emergency Operations Center, the Federal Civil Aviation Agency, the National Guard, the Secretary of the Navy and ASUR, among other authorities.”

They also said “the operations of Terminal 3 were momentarily suspended to guarantee the safety of the passengers, which was never at risk, resuming minutes later.”

It was shortly after 1:00 p.m. when the Secretary of Public Security, Lucio Hernández Gutiérrez, confirmed the report of denotations being heard at the airport, but said that “no percussion cartridges had been located nor were there any further indications” to confirm that as being fact.

Two hours later, he posted again saying “Federal Civil Aviation Agency, Emergency Operations Center and ASUR are working to find the cause around the Cancun airport, with NO signs of detonations or explosions of any kind.”

The National Guard of Mexico also confirmed no signs of firearms. They posted “In relation to the news that has been spread about what happened today, March 28, 2022, at the Cancun International Airport #QuintanaRoo, the #NationalGuard reports that no firearm shots were recorded.”

While while theory was a bursting rubber belt from an x-ray machine was responsible for the loud blast, ASUR has confirmed the “blast” was the falling of at least one large sign. The signs, which are on wheels, took a tumble. When hitting the airport floor, the sound of their landing was mistaken for gunfire.

A majority of the passengers who were outside the airport after having left the terminal were told by others from inside to run because there was a bomb, while others were overheard telling tourists there was gunfire. The news sent recently arrived guests scrambling to get away with their luggage.

The 911 Emergency calls were made by several local residents. One tourist was reportedly taken to hospital by ambulance for a leg injury after falling during the rush to escape. In their statement, ASUR reported that operations resumed at Terminal 3 around 2:23 p.m., after confirming that there was no danger to travelers, airport personnel or aircraft that were stopped on the runway.