Despite an unprecedented warning of possible terrorism issued Monday by the FBI, Olympic security bosses say there are still no threats to the 2002 Winter Games. But late Tuesday night officials did confirm an anthrax scare at the airport.

Police in and around Olympic venues have received a list and photos of 13 suspected terrorists released by the FBI.

While officials have reported half a dozen sightings of possible terrorists — including Osama bin Laden — all turned out to be false, according to Don Johnson, special agent in charge of the FBI's Salt Lake office.

"We have no indication that they have been in Salt Lake or that they're in the United States today," Johnson told reporters Tuesday at a news conference.

The briefing by FBI and Utah Olympic Public Safety Command officials was called to reiterate what Games security planners have been saying for a few weeks — there are still no known terrorist threats to the Games.

Although there have been no known threats, public health and safety officials confirmed later Tuesday that at 5:30 p.m., during routine testing at the Salt Lake City International Airport, an environmental sample tested positive for anthrax. The sample twice returned positive results at the lowest level of testing, said Dr. Scott Williams, deputy director of the Utah Department of Health.

A team from the health department, Centers for Disease Control, Utah Olympic Public Safety Command and Federal Bureau of Investigation was immediately convened, Williams said. Gov. Mike Leavitt and Salt Lake Mayor Rocky Anderson also were contacted.

Four subsequent tests turned out negative, Williams said.

Officials chose not to evacuate the airport or detain people, although the definitive tests did not come back until approximately 8 p.m.

"We didn't want to overreact and scare people," said Robert Flowers, commander of the Utah Olympic Public Safety Command.

Airport personnel were put on alert and ready to detain passengers and divert airplanes if necessary, Williams said.

The initial positive anthrax reading came from one of the monitors stationed behind the secure area of the airport, Flowers said. For security reasons, he declined to give the exact location or the total number of monitors in the airport.

The monitors have been in place since before Sept. 11, and so far officials have run about 5,000 tests at the airport, Flowers said.

The monitors contain filters, which are able to pick up even trace amounts of harmful materials, including anthrax. The filters are tested hourly and if a positive reading occurs they are retested.

The monitors have yielded false positive results in the past, Williams said, but never before has a sample tested positive twice at that level.

Officials said there is no indication the incident was meant to test Salt Lake's level of preparedness.

Earlier Tuesday, security planners stressed the FBI's terrorism warning did not cause any real changes to their security plans for the Olympics since they're already on the highest level of alert possible.

Roughly $50 million in additional federal funding has been added to the Olympic security budget since Sept. 11.

More than 15,000 security personnel are already protecting the Games, including more military personnel than in Afghanistan.

Fences and metal detectors greet visitors to venues and Olympic gathering places, and a 45-mile ring of restricted airspace patrolled by F-16s and Blackhawk helicopters surrounds Salt Lake.

"There's really not a lot we can do to enhance our security," said David Tubbs, UOPSC executive director. "We've had a solid plan; there's no reason to change."

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For all the security focus on the Games, these 2002 Olympics have so far remained rather quiet. Other than a dozen or so accidental violations of restricted airspace, an unruly passenger being arrested Sunday, and a handful of suspicious devices, breaches of security have been minimal.

Still, security officials realize they're not even halfway through the Games yet.

"I'll start breathing properly on the 25th of February," Tubbs said.


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