US’ Atlanta Airport to open security checkpoint for screening staff

11 August 2015 (Last Updated October 17th, 2017 09:13)

The Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport in the US has announced plans to start the screening of its staff at a new security checkpoint in the domestic terminal by the end of this month.

The Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport in the US has announced plans to start the screening of its staff at a new security checkpoint in the domestic terminal by the end of this month.

The three-lane checkpoint will screen workers before giving them access to secure areas in the airport premises.

Equipped with metal detectors, X-ray and explosive trace detection machines to screen workers for prohibited items, the checkpoint will be staffed with security contract workers instead of screeners from Transportation Security Administration (TSA), reported AJC.com.

The airport has been working on tightening its security measures following the discovery of a gun smuggling ring that involved a current and a former Delta Air Lines baggage handlers.

When the incident came to light in December 2014 it was alleged that the two people had smuggled around 130 firearms, including two assault rifles from Georgia to New York for more than eight months.

Delta Air Lines refused to get its employees screened at the checkpoint, saying it will continue with spot checks at shuttle lots. It also plans to tighten its screening in future.

The airport is planning to do a soft launch of the checkpoints on 31 August and estimates the screenings to take around three to five minutes.

Meanwhile, a report has recently revealed that TSA officers found 92 guns at the airport, the maximum among airports in the country.