connectVideoSome airports report more safety lines as unpaid TSA agents sick about partial government shutdown
TSA reports slight national increase in the unscheduled absences, but the average security line wait times seem to be unaffected; Rick Leventhal reports from LaGuardia Airport.
A security checkpoint in Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport remains closed Monday morning by TSA personnel, despite the airport saying that the checkpoint would be reopened from Monday.
“As a result of personnel issues in connection with the partial closure of the federal government, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) security checkpoint and the ticketing counter in Terminal B at George Bush Intercontinental Airport remains closed,” a message posted on the “alerts” section of the airport’s official website reads.
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The airport also shared the news on Twitter, explaining that passengers scheduled to check in at Terminal B will be doing at the Terminals C or E.
The George Bush Intercontinental Airport originally had the hatches for the Terminal B checkpoint on Sunday, citing the same human resources allegedly caused by the partial government shutdown.
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The TSA, meanwhile, has assured passengers that the security at airports throughout the country will not be affected in the wake of the reports of the employees call out of work.
“TSA, airport authorities & airlines continue to work closely together to ensure resources are optimized, screening & safety is never compromised, and efforts to consolidate activities are actively managed and communicated,” tweeted Michael Bilello, the TSA, the administrator of public affairs. “Make sure that you must call in your airport time may be affected.”
Last week, the TSA reported that screening time had not slowed significantly following reports of more-than-average checkpoint lines at a handful of airports in the country.
In its alert, however, the Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport is urging flyers to give themselves “extra time” to get through the security.
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The closure of the Houston airport’s security checkpoint following the closure of an entire terminal at the International Airport of Miami for similar staffing reasons.
The TSA confirmed last week that there are about 51,000 employees currently in service with the agency.