Federal and local authorities are investigating the security at New York City’s John F. Kennedy airport after 11 people passed through an unattended checkpoint on Monday morning.
Just before 6 a.m. on Monday, 11 people walked through an unattended TSA PreCheck security checkpoint. Three of the travelers set of the checkpoint’s metal detectors and walked away without a secondary screening.
The TSA did not notify police of the security breach until two hours later, according to local news reports. By that time, police were unable to find the 11 people because the “travelers in question boarded various flights,” Joe Pentangelo, the senior police public information officer at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, told CNN in a statement.
However, the TSA has called the breach only a “possible security incident,” adding that all of the passengers’ carry-on bags were screened and that a K9 team was “present at the checkpoint at the time of the incident.”
Using photos and video screengrabs, TSA agents identified the three who set off the metal detectors as passengers onboard a flight bound for California. By the time they were identified, the flight had already taken off. Agents in San Francisco searched the three passengers upon arrival.
“TSA works with a network of security layers both seen and unseen,” the agency said in a statement. “We are confident this incident presents no threat to the aviation transportation system. Once our review is complete, TSA will discipline and retrain employees as appropriate.”
This isn’t the only TSA security breach that happened this weekend. Across the country, a man died after breaching security in Honolulu airport. The man forced his way through the exit lane of the security checkpoint on Saturday morning. He was apprehended and detained by airport authorities. During the time he was detained, the man became unresponsive. He was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead. The cause of death is yet unknown.