Explosives Detection Trace Portal Deployed to Los Angeles International Airport

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE  - May 12, 2005 TSA Press Office: (571) 227-2829

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Transportation Security Administration recently installed a new explosives detection trace portal that will be used to screen passengers at the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) in Terminal One.  The equipment is part of a pilot program to test and evaluate the trace portal for screening passengers for explosives.  

"By adding this new technology, LAX remains on the cutting edge of post-9/11 security," said Larry Fetters, TSA Federal Security Director.  "The new explosives detection trace portal adds another important layer of security here at LAX."

Los Angeles International Airport joins San Francisco; San Diego; Tampa; New York (JFK airport); Baltimore (BWI airport); Las Vegas; Miami; Gulfport-Biloxi, Miss.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Providence, R.I.; Rochester, N.Y.; and Phoenix as hosts to this new technology.  The pilot, scheduled to continue through the summer, will provide data on the impact of the equipment on security and customer service.

At LAX, some passengers will be directed by the TSA screeners to step into the trace portal.  Passengers will stand still for a few seconds while several "puffs" of air are released.  The portal will collect and analyze the air for traces of explosives and a computerized voice will tell passengers when to exit.  

To date, TSA has allocated $28.3 million for the purchase and installation of an additional 147 trace portals.  TSA is also developing a deployment plan to have the equipment in airports by January 2006.  Once the plans are finalized, TSA will announce the next group of airports to receive the equipment.