WASHINGTON — People came to D.C. from all over the country to participate in the riots at the Capitol on Jan. 6. As security ramps up around the District with the threats of more incoming violence, airports are cracking down too.
An increased law enforcement presence will be seen at the three DMV area airports, Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, Washington Dulles International Airport and Baltimore-Washington Thurgood Marshall International Airport.
“Both our airports, Reagan National and Dulles International, are operating normally, and passengers can expect to see an increased law enforcement presence from now through next week’s presidential inauguration. Beyond that, the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority does not publicly discuss details of its security operations or tactics,” according to a statement from the Metropolitan Airports Authority.
TSA also released a statement on measures they plan to take ahead of travel on or near Inauguration Day.
“Travelers will notice additional law enforcement and canine presence at the three Washington, D.C., area airports -- Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, Washington Dulles International Airport and Baltimore-Washington Thurgood Marshall International Airport. We have deployed technologies that enhance security screening and aid in the detection of prohibited items.
TSA screens travelers at airport security checkpoints who have a valid boarding pass and photo identification. TSA compares passenger information to the No Fly and Selectee List components of the Terrorist Screening Database (TSDB) to identify individuals who are known or suspected terrorists and, when warranted by security considerations, against other watch lists maintained by TSA or other federal agencies. This watch list prescreening, one of several important security measures in place to protect U.S. national and transportation security, takes place prior to the passenger’s arrival at the checkpoint. Individuals known to pose a threat to aviation who are on the No-Fly list will not be issued a boarding pass and are not allowed to fly.”
Acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf said he instructed the U.S. Secret Service to “begin the national special security event operations for the 2021 inauguration effective Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2021.”
Meanwhile, U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer said, “The people, the insurrectionists, who breached the U.S. Capitol, fall under the definition of threats to the homeland, and should be immediately added to the TSA No-Fly list.”
The No-Fly lists were created after the attacks on 9/11. They’re created from the FBI's terrorist screening database. Airlines also have the ability to ban people from flying with them.
The FAA is also doing its part in the crackdown. They said they are changing their rules about unruly passengers in the wake of the riots. They’re now targeting passengers who “assault, threaten, intimidate, or interfere” with crew members while flying and they could be booted from flights without warning and face fines of up to $35,000.