Homeland Security Investments to Improve Traffic at Redmond Airport
Jun 04,2006 00:00 by Bend Weekly News Sources
U.S. Congressman Greg Walden of Oregon announced earlier this week that the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has committed to adding additional staff and equipment to Roberts Field in Redmond, to help improve the efficiency of passenger and luggage security screening.  This fall, TSA will hire six more part-time screeners for the airport and will purchase two Reveal CTX-80 baggage scanners to help reduce delays due to security screening for individuals flying out of Redmond.  TSA also plans to add an additional x-ray machine at the security check point.

“Thorough security screening of both passengers and bags is a critical component to airline safety.  However, as someone who flies between Oregon and the nation’s capital nearly every week, I know firsthand how understaffed screening points can cause severe travel delays and major headaches at airports both small and large.  As one of the fastest growing regions in the country, central Oregon continues to see more airline traffic from residents, vacationers and business travelers,” said Walden.

He added, “This investment by the TSA in Roberts Field is imperative to both the airport’s safety and its viability.  More equipment and personnel will help the airport more efficiently and effectively keep pace with the growing number of passengers flying out of Redmond.  Airport administrator Carrie Novick and her crew deserve tremendous credit for having the foresight and know-how to position the Redmond airport’s needs so effectively.”

In recent months, Roberts Field has added several new departing flights and there are plans by some carriers to increase service through larger planes, adding to the number of passengers that will be departing from the airport.  This increase in passengers coupled with the greater volume of travel during the summer months holidays has led to an enhanced need for TSA screeners and screening equipment to ensure that flights are able to depart on time.

Upon hearing the news, Roberts Field Manager Carrie Novick said, “This is incredible news.  With the addition of the new Horizon Air service to Los Angeles starting in August, and their announced fleet change planes with more capacity over the next year, I was very concerned about how the airport’s current TSA personnel would be able to handle the additional volume of passengers and baggage.  Horizon Air, Sky West and airport staff have been trying for more than a year to find a solution to this problem, but without the help of Congressman Walden and Senator Smith, these positive changes wouldn’t be happening.”

Congressman Walden is currently serving his fourth term representing Oregon’s 2nd District in the House of Representatives. Bend Oregon Central Oregon