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Over 1 million people screened at airports for first time since pandemic

Coronavirus

(KRON) — For the first time since April, the Transportation Security Administration screened over 1 million people at security checkpoints across the country.

According to TSA spokesperson Lisa Farbstein, the 1,031,505 people screened on Sunday is still 60% lower than one year ago before the coronavirus pandemic.

Numbers from TSA indicate more people are flying this month. According to TSA, over 780,000 people were screened in airports two days prior — and that’s 19,000 more people than one week earlier.

  • Oct. 18 – 1,031,505 people screened
  • Oct. 14 – 717,940 people screened
  • Oct. 7 – 668,519 people screened

Farbstein says the Friday of Labor Day weekend and Indigenous Peoples’ Day were record volume days, getting close to 1 million at a little over 968,000 people screened.

The lowest number of people screened during the pandemic was 87,534 on April 14, 2020.

The Centers for Disease Control offers the following guidance on air travel during the pandemic:

Air travel requires spending time in security lines and airport terminals, which can bring you in close contact with other people and frequently touched surfaces.

Most viruses and other germs do not spread easily on flights because of how air circulates and is filtered on airplanes. However, social distancing is difficult on crowded flights, and sitting within 6 feet of others, sometimes for hours, may increase your risk of getting COVID-19.

Also consider how you get to and from the airport, as public transportation and ridesharing can increase your chances of being exposed to the virus.

If you are traveling, the CDC says to follow these safety steps:

  • Wear a mask to keep your nose and mouth covered when in public settings.
  • Avoid close contact by staying at least 6 feet apart (about 2 arms’ length) from anyone who is not from your household.
  • Wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer (with at least 60% alcohol).
  • Avoid contact with anyone who is sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

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