Atlanta airport says security wait times best in seven years

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Security checkpoint wait times at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport were under 20 minutes 96 percent of the time in July, according to airport officials.

That’s the highest percentage of under 20-minute wait times in seven years, according to Hartsfield-Jackson.

In May, wait times were under 20 minutes at the Atlanta airport only 63 percent of the time. In July 2015, that happened only 67 percent of the time.

It’s a turnabout after a tumultuous winter and spring where security lines at Hartsfield-Jackson often stretched through the terminal, attracting negative publicity leading up to the firing of Atlanta airport general manager Miguel Southwell in May.


Lines at Hartsfield-Jackson the morning of May 12.


Passengers walk to the security checkpoint at Hartsfield-Jackson on Aug. 28.

The significant improvement in security waits came after the Transportation Security Administration added staff and canine teams and scheduled more screeners during the busy early-morning hours. TSA also brought officers to Atlanta from other airports during busy periods.

And Delta paid for two new automated  “innovation lanes” at Hartsfield-Jackson’s South security checkpoint that can speed screening by 30 percent.

Read more on about what it took to shorten wait times and the work to come to handle the strain on security checkpoints as passenger counts grow.

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