Watch CBS News

Airports Move To Minimize Contact By Relying On Technology

MIAMI (CBSMiami) - Airports will have to rely on technology to minimize contact with passengers, as things begin to get back to normal.

The goal is to have as little contact as possible with the passengers.

This month, the TSA released guidelines for their employees to follow at airports nationwide. They ensure minimum contact with employees, social distancing and the wearing of protective face coverings.

At Miami International Airport, the objective is to make the process of boarding and deplaning as seamless as possible and with as little contact as possible.

Already, most airports around the country have the technology for identifying passengers while avoiding contact.

Sara Dunlap, Sara Dunlap Assistant Port Director, says, "We have learned that facial comparison technology is more accurate and is a quick response to confirm that person's identity."

"So, when the passenger enters the U.S., they will come to the officer who is stationed here. The officer takes a picture with a camera and within seconds, they get official confirmation. If there is a match to that the officer no longer needs to handle documents or passports."

Currently, that system in place for some international flight arrivals and departures. At the Lufthansa gate, no touch is the norm.

Maurice Jenkins, Division Director for Information Systems at Miami-Dade Aviation Department, says, "Normally when they call a flight to board what normally happens is you scan the boarding pass and show a passport. It combines it into one now, when you walk up to the unit, it scans your face and correlates that with the passengers' dimensions from customs that allows you to clear."

The system makes use of the passenger's passport picture for the match.

Currently, units are only being used by Lufthansa but MIA will launch biometric boarding with other airlines later this year.

"The safety and security of being able to contactless, walk up to the device, scan, facial recognition by the biometrics allows you to board. It eases the process too, without anyone, touching paper, passports. That is what we are looking to minimize now."

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.