HENRICO COUNTY, Va. -- The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) implemented new security measures focused on passengers' carry-on electronics at Richmond International Airport, Thursday morning.
According to a press release, TSA officers now required travelers to remove electronics larger than a cell phone from their carry-on bags and place them in a bin with nothing on top or below.
The process was similar to how laptops have been screened for a few years. The step helped TSA officers obtain a clearer X-ray image to check for possible destructive devices disguised inside electronics, according to a spokesperson.
"The terror threat is real and we are committed to raising the baseline for aviation security," said Lisa Farbstein, TSA Spokesperson.
The new procedures do not change the type of items that are currently allowed inside carry-on bags and onto planes.
Please understand you can bring all these things through a checkpoint," Farbstein explained. "We just ask you to basically put them through a conveyor belt in a little different order."
The stronger security measures did not apply to passengers enrolled in TSA Pre✓® who are using TSA Pre✓® lanes, the agency notes.
The program allowed TSA to focus resources on passengers who may pose a high risk to security while providing expedited screening to those travelers who have been identified as low-risk, trusted travelers.
Passengers at Richmond International Airport noted the added security did not disrupt their wait times at checkpoints.
"I really didn't have any problems," said Ron Robinson. "I understand what the TSA has to go through. So, as long as they make things secure, I'm OK."
With the recent change, some periods at RIC – particularly early mornings – have seen extended wait times at the checkpoints. Additionally, travelers should know:
- Travelers are strongly encouraged to check in at least 90 minutes prior to departure. Please note, some airlines recommend checking in two hours prior for domestic flights.
- Once checked in, travelers should proceed directly to the security screening checkpoints.
- 40 minutes prior to departure, travelers should be at their departure gates, ready to board.
- Learn more about security screening: https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening.