TSA begins PreCheck operations at Washington, Chicago airports

21 March 2012 (Last Updated March 21st, 2012 04:35)

The US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has launched the TSA PreCheck passenger pre-screening initiative at Ronald Reagan Washington National (DCA) Airport and Chicago O'Hare International Airport (ORD).

The US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has launched the TSA PreCheck passenger pre-screening initiative at Ronald Reagan Washington National (DCA) Airport and Chicago O'Hare International Airport (ORD).

As per the new initiative, frequent fliers at DCA, including the active duty service members in the US Armed Forces will be eligible to go through expedited screening.

The members of US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Trusted Traveler programmes including Global Entry, SENTRI and NEXUS are now eligible for the screening at both the airports.

TSA Security Operations assistant administrator, Christopher McLaughlin, said: "This initiative is one part of our shift away from a one-size-fits-all approach and instead toward implementing more intelligence driven, risk-based, security measures."

"Modifications to screening procedures for our trusted military members demonstrate our commitment to implementing common sense security measures at airports nationwide," McLaughlin said.

TSA has partnered with the US Department of Defense to further streamline screening for active duty service members.

Active members of military departing at DCA will now have to display their Common Access Card (CAC) to go through faster screening process and the eligible service members need not to be in uniform to qualify for the screening.

The service members can leave their shoes and light outerwear on, can keep their laptop in its case and their 3-1-1 compliant liquids / gels bag in a carry-on.

TSA said that the new initiative will enhance aviation security by facilitating it to focus on a risk-based, intelligence driven approach, while speeds up the screening procedures for passengers who disclose information prior to flying.

Following the TSA's authentication of the eligibility of the passenger, the information is embedded in the barcode of the passengers boarding pass, which will facilitate access to a separate TSA PreCheck lane.

At O'Hare International Airport the PreCheck will be available at the Terminal 3, Checkpoint 8 for the American airlines and in DCA it will be located at Terminal B, South Checkpoint in for Delta Air Lines passengers.

TSA will conduct random and unpredictable security checks all through the airport to prevent terrorists from gaining entry into the airport.

Its multi-layered approach to security also comprises behaviour detection officers, explosives-detection systems, canine teams and federal air marshals.

PreCheck programme is now available at 12 airports across the country.