SEATTLE -- The next time you fly out of Sea-Tac airport, you may see new automated screening lanes. The new security measures are meant help you spend less time in line and keep you safer in the skies.
Going through security lines at any airport can be a process, but new state-of-the-art technology hopes to change that.
“That is the reason why we spend so much time energy, effort and focus on making our security checkpoints as efficient as possible without compromising security,” said Lance Lyttle, Managing Director of Sea-Tac Airport.
It’s called Automated Screening Lanes (ASL’s). At Sea-Tac are currently at checkpoint 5 at the north end of the airport. There are currently three of them and installation of the lanes was completed last week.
“These lanes improve security. Our officers can bring more focus on our core mission of assessing core indicators and spend less time on the manual labor of moving bins around the checkpoint,” said Jeff Holmgren, TSA Federal Security Director for Washington.
The automated lanes were purchased by the Port of Seattle. Officials said a couple of years ago they noticed the uptick in wait times for passengers. These lanes hope to remedy that.
“You can walk up to any station that`s open. There`s no need to wait for the person in front of you to finish,” said Lorie Dankers, TSA Spokesperson.
The automated lanes take the job of bin moving from TSA agents so they can concentrate in finding prohibited objects. Other features of the lanes include an automated conveyor belt that will move your luggage through the x-ray machine. Automation also takes away bags with questionable or prohibited items in it. The bins itself are 25% larger and there are cameras on the machine’s looking at the entire process one bag at a time.
“The bins are RFID enabled to track them through the screening process making secondary screening and alarm resolution faster and more effective,” said Holmgren.
Along with the new automated screening lanes, just last week Sea-Tac Airport announced more canine screening teams to help process passengers faster.
And the last year, airport officials added a private service from the company "Clear" that verifies your identity through biometrics.
As for the automated screening lanes, this is the first time they're being used at Sea-Tac.
The lanes have already been used in 14 other airports throughout the country.