The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) announced changes to the security screening process to prevent cross-contamination at the checkpoints between employees and travelers.
As a reduced number of airline passengers prepare to fly during the Memorial Day holiday weekend, the TSA has already started implementing the changes and plans to have airport checkpoints nationwide up-to-date by mid-June.
While the number of travelers is drastically lower than it was in year’s previous, TSA officials has experienced a steady growth of travelers coming through airport checkpoints in recent weeks.
“In the interest of TSA frontline workers and traveler health, TSA is committed to making prudent changes to our screening processes to limit physical contact and increase physical distance as much as possible,” TSA Administrator David Pekoske said in a statement. “We continue to evaluate our security measures with an eye towards making smart, timely decisions benefiting health and safety, as well as the traveler experience.”
Travelers should expect several new procedure changes, including being asked to scan their own boarding passes, separate food for X-ray screening, pack carefully to avoid slowing down screening process, practice social distancing and wear facial protection.
Airline passengers who have not flown since the viral pandemic began are also likely to notice some other changes, such as reduced security lane usage, some TSA agents wearing eye protection, plastic shielding at document checking podiums and routine disinfecting of frequently touched surfaces.
A study from earlier this month found that over half of American travelers want to make their first trip (once it’s appropriate to travel again) a domestic visit to reunite with friends and family, following so much self-isolation.
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