A device that appeared to be a pipe bomb was discovered in a checked bag at Philadelphia International Airport on Wednesday, resulting in the closure of the checked baggage room for a little under an hour.
The checked bag triggered an alarm, causing a Transportation Security Administration officer to open the luggage and discover the device, which had the makings of a pipe bomb.
TSA evacuated the checked baggage room and called the police. A bomb squad arrived at the scene, a press release shared.
Officials were able to track down the passenger, who explained the bomb-like apparatus was actually a prototype laser for a robot.
The bomb squad cleared the device as harmless. The baggage room was closed for about 42 minutes during the investigation.
“The TSA officers who discovered the device did exactly what they were supposed to do in notifying supervisors and clearing the area until the bomb squad could clear the item,” said Gerardo Spero, TSA’s Acting Federal Security Director for Philadelphia International Airport. “Fortunately it turned out to be harmless, but we don’t take chances when something like this is spotted.”
The passenger was able to board his flight after his luggage was cleared.