CHEEKTOWAGA, N.Y. (WIVB) – The Federal Security Director in Upstate New York for the Transportation Security Administration said Tuesday that the Buffalo Niagara International Airport is “overstaffed” with officers ready to handle an increased number of travelers in the summer months.
“They know what they’re doing, the officers,” said Bart Johnson. “They do it every day. They do a great job at it.”
While air travel is still not quite at pre-pandemic levels, TSA officials say it is increasing. Johnson estimated officers are dealing with between 60% and 65% of the through-put they normally see, and expect that to increase to 80% by June and July.
At the Buffalo airport, NFTA officials say they are accommodating more than 4,500 passengers per day. That’s down from 7,500 during the pre-pandemic era.
Johnson reminded travelers that mask mandates remain in place in airports and on passenger airplanes. He said TSA officers will offer a mask to individuals who arrive at a checkpoint without a face covering. If that individual refuses to wear it, he or she will be escorted out of the airport, he said.
Chris Horvatits is an award-winning anchor and reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2017. See more of his work here.