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Mud Triggers Security Alert At Logan Airport

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Logan Airport control tower

Logan Airport control tower (credit: AP)

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BOSTON (AP) – State police say nitrates detected in a piece of checked luggage at Boston’s Logan International Airport were traced to a sample of mud brought back from a river in Hong Kong.

Two gates at the American Airlines terminal were closed as a precaution on Tuesday afternoon after the nitrates were detected. The gates were reopened about an hour later after it was determined there was no danger.

State police said the mud sample was brought to Boston by a doctoral student at Hong Kong University who was participating in a research program at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.

Certain nitrates can be ingredients in explosives.

Police said Tuesday’s incident demonstrated the ability of security equipment at the Boston airport to detect even minute levels of potentially dangerous substances.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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