A terminal at Los Angeles International Airport was evacuated for almost three hours Tuesday after officials noticed suspicious packages that later turned out to be wrapped Christmas presents.

"Someone discovered gifts wrapped in a trash can, and given today's environment, they had to investigate," said Tom Winfrey, spokesman for Los Angeles World Airports.

The presents were discovered around 9:30 a.m. outside the international terminal. A police bomb squad investigated, and police said the area was clear at about 12:15 p.m.

Outgoing flights were grounded during the evacuation, and incoming planes were diverted to other areas of the airport, which was jammed with Christmas Day travelers. Vehicle traffic to the terminal was also halted.

"That's why we always tell people not to wrap their presents," Winfrey said. "When they discover them in their carryon they toss them and it causes a lot of problems for everyone."

Part of the same terminal was evacuated Sunday afternoon when someone left a bag unattended.