Will the Tech Industry Help TSA Reduce Wait Times?

The Massachusetts Technology Learning Council called on companies to send proposals to the TSA for better ways to secure checkpoints and move passengers from the terminal to the gate.

by Jordan Graham, Boston Herald / June 30, 2016

(TNS) -- Painfully long waits in airport security lines and fears of attacks on terminals in the U.S. has the TSA calling on technology companies, including those in Massachusetts, to come up with new and innovative ways to improve checkpoints.

“I am writing with an urgent request from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to companies in the region who may have, or may be developing, technologies that can help quickly screen passengers and luggage at airport checkpoints,” wrote Tom Hopcroft, chief executive of the Massachusetts Technology Learning Council in an email to members yesterday.

The email called on companies to send proposals to the TSA for better ways to secure checkpoints and move passengers from the terminal to the gate.

The request came before the attack on the Turkish airport this week, the second major airport attack this year, but Hopcroft said it made it all the more necessary.

“With the attack it made it that much more poignant, that the TSA is trying to use technology to expedite the throughput and experience of travelers but also make it safer and they’re looking to places like Massachusetts to help,” he said.

The TSA has been criticized for long lines to get through security in airports across the country, including as long as four hours in Chicago.

Hopcroft said some of the technology that could be most helpful for airport security is being developed in Massachusetts, including innovations in technology, sensors and machine learning.

“A lot of the building blocks of what you would need to help address a problem like this are here,” he said. “There’s a lot of reasons why our tech community is well suited and up for the challenge for trying to take a piece of the bigger problem on.”

©2016 the Boston Herald Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.