At ease, summer flyers. There’s a brand new fifth lane for security at the Spokane International Airport.
The new lane, at the A and B concourse security checkpoint, was added to accommodate increased travel through the airport, according to Lorie Dankers, a spokeswoman with the Transportation Security Administration, or TSA.
Since 2015, Dankers said, TSA has seen a 25 percent increase in the number of people screened through the security checkpoint of the airport’s main gates. The summer months are the busiest, with a sustained increase in travelers compared to the fluctuating flying during the surrounding holidays.
On a typical day, about 6,000 people go through security at the airport. During the summer months, that number can increase to about 6,800 a day.
“With all the growth at the airport, it was an investment they needed to make,” Dankers said. The cost to expand the checkpoint, which amounts to $500,000, was paid for by the airport. TSA furnishes the screening equipment.
The A and B concourses provide service for Southwest, Frontier, Delta and United airlines. The airport’s C gate, which services Alaska and American airlines, is not as busy, and its security checkpoint continues with three lanes.
While the new lane should lessen wait times during busy travel periods, Dankers said, the airport still recommends arriving 90 minutes before the flight boards.
“Always err on the side of caution,” she said. “You don’t want to miss your flight.”