Published December 27, 2011
The Transportation Security Administration has suspended one of its employees at Newark's Liberty International Airport after a security breach occurred last Thursday.
TSA Officials say that the security worker, who has been with the agency since 2002, failed to screen two bags before sending them to a staging area to be placed on two international flights. A co-worker had noticed the improper screening which enabled them to quickly conduct a rescreening before loading the luggage onto the two aircraft. The flights were able to leave with no delay.
"The safety of the traveling public is TSA’s top priority. We hold our employees to the highest professional standards and take appropriate action when necessary. The individual in question is no longer performing screening duties and appropriate action is being taken," TSA Spokesman Greg Soule told FoxNews.com
A TSA source at Newark airport told FoxNews.com that there could have been many reasons for the breach and that “test luggage” is often sent through the checkpoints to keep security officers on their toes.
“The worker could have been distracted for a second, or someone may have been talking to them and they didn’t give a complete screening,” the TSA source said, adding that additional training is likely when the worker is off of suspension.
The source claims that the worker was operating a program that he was not certified to run ,making any bag that was cleared on his watch a security breach.
Officials for the TSA did not immediately confirm or deny the claim.