updated 3/17/2010 2:19:56 PM ET 2010-03-17T18:19:56

Airport security agents mistakenly allowed a bottle of liquid to pass through before it was properly scanned early Wednesday at Los Angeles International Airport, causing a security breach that halted screening for about 25 minutes, authorities said.

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The unopened bottle that a couple said was prescription medication was examined by a special scanner to determine if it contained explosives, but it was returned to the couple before the test was completed, said Suzanne Trevino, a spokeswoman for the Transportation Security Administration.

The couple — a man in a wheelchair and a woman — proceeded to their boarding gate at about 5:30 a.m. before TSA agents realized their mistake and "out of an abundance of caution" went to find them, Trevino said.

Security screening at three terminals was halted until the couple were found and the liquid was cleared, officials said. No terminals were closed and no planes were delayed.

Federal authorities will review the incident, Trevino said.

"We certainly always want to learn from any security breach and see if there are procedures to take a look at," Trevino said. "We're satisfied that the possible or potential threat was located ... and did not cause harm."

She said the bottle was allowed onboard because it was a prescription medication but needed secondary screening because it contained more than the allowable 3.4 ounces.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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