Another TSA Shutdown Question

Apparently a few airports are experiencing sick-outs with some TSA agents staying home rather than working for no pay. Does anyone know which airports are impacted, or does it change on a day-to-day basis?

Intriguingly enough, this article about the Palm Springs airport being affected quotes a director’s email saying that absences by officers have “adversely impacted security operations”. The TSA has said that “security effectiveness will not be compromised and performance standards will not change.”

It might therefore be implied that the operations of the TSA have no direct correlation to airline security: They can’t do all the things they want to do, but it’s still safe to fly because the things they want to do don’t affect flight safety. Go figure.

@Dolphinboy - I think the first thing you need to do is clarify what you mean by “impacted”. From what I’ve read the the US government and the media have two different definitions.

It seems like when the government says “there is no impact”, they’re referring to safety. When the media says there “is an impact”, they’re referring to traveller wait times.

If you’re concerned about safety, I wouldn’t be. All that will happen is the line-ups will take as long as they take, minutes may become hours. The main job of the TSA is safety, not fast processing. Line-ups are an inconvenience, but only to travellers. A jet blowing up because of a hasty security check would be a massive concern to the country (not to mention a political disaster to the administration).

If you’re concerned about line ups and wait times, that concern is justified. If TSA agents don’t get paid, there’s not a lot of protest options other than calling in sick.

Assuming you mean “impacted” as longer wait times: I’m going to be flying later in January, so I’ve only been loosely following it now, but from what I’ve read, the picture is changing every day depending on who is calling in that day.

It doesn’t seem like there is currently a union organized “everybody call in sick at JFK today” type of protest. I think the best bet would be to contact your airline and ask them about the specific airport and flight you’re on.