BWI to bring in private contrators to aid waits

Posted at 5:50 PM, May 24, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-24 17:51:10-04

Long lines and waits at airport security checkpoints around the country are expected to get worse with a big travel weekend ahead and summer around the corner.

Tuesday afternoon there were no lines or waits, however, as passengers zipped through TSA at BWI airport. Even so, long lines are a concern around the country and no foreign affair close to home.

ABC2 video taken at BWI last week showed a line at Concourse D that was hundreds of people long, through a hallway and out the other side.

The airport plans on opening a new security checkpoint to serve both domestic and international travelers later this year, but experienced travelers like Greg Harrell said nothing is a substitute for good planning.

"How early is too early? You can't be too early," Harrell said.

Another traveler, John Slaven, was traveling to Detroit and said he arrived at the airport about five hours early.

"I don't want to miss the flight, so just want to make sure I get home on time," he said. "Everyone's got to go to work the next day."

Thousands of travelers across the country have been caught in long lines with some ending up stranded after missing flights, most notably in the nations largest cities like Chicago and New York.

"Luckily here it doesn't seem so bad," Slaven said.

"With all the TSA and things going on, if something happened, I want to be way ahead of that, comfortable, sitting down at the gate, relaxing," Harrell said.

The TSA has blamed personnel shortages and higher passenger volumes for the delays, but has promised changes ahead of summer travel.

BWI also plans on bringing in independent contractors to help with the lines, a spokesman said Tuesday.

They will  be hired by the airlines and will be in place later this week.

Follow Dakarai Turner on Twitter @Dakarai_Turner and like him on Facebook.