Bomb disposal experts were called in on Sunday at a US airport to deal with what later turned out to be a dud explosive device. A mechanic checking over a returned Avis rental vehicle at Albuquerque Airport found what looked like a bomb when he jacked it up to inspect the undercarriage.
The mechanic found the device which looked like a pipe-bomb stuck close to the petrol tank at around 08:30. As soon as he saw it, he called in the airport security team who in turn contacted the bomb-disposal team.
After checking out the device, the team determined that while the contraption resembled a bomb and had all the necessary components, it lacked any kind of detonation mechanism. Yesterday, a local police spokesperson confirmed that the device was a fake bomb. Police have asked the public to contact them if they have any information relating to the bomb.
The spokesperson said that while the bomb was not primed to detonate, the person who had planted it faced serious criminal charges. Investigators say the car was rented from another as yet undisclosed Avis station before being dropped off in Albuquerque.
Car rental service offices at Albuquerque Airport are in a separate facility to the passenger terminals and the bomb scare did not have any impact on arriving or departing flights. Renters picking up and dropping off vehicles faced delays until the all-clear was given at around midday.
One driver picking a vehicle up from Avis later said he was among a number of customers shepherded into a car park. Another person noted that Avis service staff manning the station were asked to stay put until the bomb-squad gave the all-clear.