HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) —
The Transportation Security Administration checkpoint in Terminal B at George Bush Intercontinental Airport will remain closed for now.
The ticketing counter and security checkpoint first closed around 3:30 p.m. Sunday due to staffing shortages related to the shutdown of the federal government. Not enough staff is arriving to work.
TSA reports that 7.6 percent of their staff called out Monday. That’s up 3.2 percent on the same day last year.
RELATED: What is a government shutdown? 5 things to know
Flights still took off over the weekend, but passengers scheduled to leave from Terminal B were directed to ticket counters and TSA checkpoints located in Terminals C and E.
The airport tweeted that passengers with flights out of Terminal B Monday morning will still need to go through Terminals C and E.
Terminal B security checkpoint remains closed this AM. Passengers w/ flights out of Terminal B will need to check in, and be screened at Terminal C or E. Please arrive early to allow plenty of time for this change. More info at: https://t.co/1ufWu0a111
— Houston Bush Airport (@iah) January 14, 2019
Travelers are also urged to allow more time for the change, with even Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner saying that getting to the airport two hours earlier is especially important now.
Advice to always get to @iah 2 hours before your flight is especially important today. Shortage of TSA workers, unpaid during the US gov’t shutdown, is causing this change. Terminal B is solely @united flights. pic.twitter.com/ijCKa4k1NP
— Sylvester Turner (@SylvesterTurner) January 13, 2019
TSA agents have been calling in sick to protest the shutdown. Many are now wondering how long this will go on.
“I’m a frequent traveler,” said Morris Overstreet. “What I try to do is add another 30 minutes to my travel time just in case. It really has been slow. I don’t think the airport has been busy, not this airport, not Amarillo. I think people are deciding not to run the risk.”
“I hate that it’s happening to them, but it’s important that they get this done,” William Thorton said.
For information on wait times for IAH and Hobby, visit Fly2Houston.
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