WASHINGTON — The Transportation Security Administration has named Boston Logan International Airport (BOS), the primary airport serving New England, as its 2018 Airport of the Year.
“The TSA team here in Boston consists of nearly 1,500 employees from frontline TSA officers to inspectors, canine handlers, explosives experts, managers, program analysts and a host of others who work together every single day of the year to ensure that we protect the travelling public to ensure freedom of movement for people and commerce,” said Bob Allison, TSA’s Federal Security Director for Massachusetts. “The TSA officers and the others who comprise our team demonstrate their commitment daily through their hard work, professionalism and integrity.”
Allison also pointed to the successful partnership that TSA has with the Massachusetts Port Authority, the Massachusetts State Police, the airlines and more than 25 stakeholder groups that comprise the more than 17,000 individuals who work at the airport as being key to the success of TSA at the airport.
“We have a great partnership with the TSA to make sure that our customers have a safe and efficient experience,” said Massport’s Aviation Director Ed Freni.
TSA selected BOS as an “Innovation Airport” in 2018, meaning the airport is eligible for piloting new programs and as such, became the second airport in the country to successfully deploy a computed tomography scanning system in the security checkpoint. Boston also hosted a technology demonstration of two new automated screening lanes in Terminals A and C, which have helped increase effectiveness of the passenger screening process, especially during peak travel hours. In addition, BOS is at the forefront of using credential authentication technology, which uses devices that determine whether a traveler’s identification is valid.
TSA officials at BOS focused on optimizing threat detection and developed and implemented an online system this year to provide real time trending data, which allowed leadership to identify opportunities for improvement.
TSA officers at Boston detected a record number of firearms at the airport in FY18 (October 2017 to September 2018), a 35.7 percent increase from the 14 detected in FY17.
BOS is the fourth fastest growing airport in North America with a 6 percent increase in passenger traffic. Earlier this summer there was one day that saw TSA screen 75,620 travelers in a single day (April 13, 2018.) which marked the busiest day at Logan in TSA history and represented an 8.8 percent jump from the previous high day of 69,505. Even with the increased passenger throughput, the average security checkpoint wait time was the best in the nation at 9.58 minutes this past summer.
TSA leadership in Boston developed a multi-layered action plan to ensure greater inclusive of the larger workforce and developed an Employee Engagement Team and coordinator that focused on employee engagement, communication and involvement, which resulted in focus groups, monthly team meetings, briefings on hot topics and the development of an Officer of the Month program. This focus on employee engagement was initiated as part of a larger agency goal to build future leaders within the agency.