Earlier today, eleven passenger walked through a security lane without being screen at Kennedy Airport. TSA agents failed to have people on duty and left an area open and unattended according law enforcement officials. The metal detector went off three times as these people walked through the screening lane, but no one was there to watch the x-ray machine, perform the pat downs or to operate the magnetometer. None of the passengers who went through customs was found once inside the terminal.
From Daily News:
“What you have is 11 people, unscreened, who boarded unknown flights to unknown destinations,” a law enforcement source said. “This is the failure of the TSA to do its job.” Rather than notifying the police, who are specifically trained to handle those situations, the TSA used its own lesser trained agents to search for the unscreened passengers. “The TSA tried to mitigate the situation by sending their screeners through the terminal in violation of all the protocols,” a source said. “The protocol says law enforcement is immediately notified.” When they were finally notified, Port Authority cops flooded the terminal equipped with surveillance photos of the travelers, but none of them could be found, the sources said.
All of this inefficiency resulted in an two hour delay. Travelers who were boarding various flights were stopped to be questioned. Three of the people who set off the metal detectors were headed to California. More importantly, an investigation regarding who this breach was allowed to take place is being initiated.
“Port Authority Police are continuing to assist federal authorities in efforts to identify and locate the other eight passengers,” the official said. “Early reports indicate three passengers did not receive required secondary screening after alarming the walk through detector,” the agency said. “All personal carry-on bags receive required screening.” The statement did not make explicitly clear whether there was anyone at the screening spot to look at the monitors as the bags went through the x-ray machine. The TSA said it was “confident” the incident represented “no threat to the aviation transportation system.”