New automated screening lanes up and running at Midway Airport

CHICAGO -- Just in time for the big Thanksgiving holiday travel period coming up next week, new automated screening lanes are now in operation at Midway Airport.

Officials with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) say about 28,000 travelers will be screened at Midway every day during the Thanksgiving travel period. The new technology will help speed up the process.

There are already five automated screening lanes up and running at O'Hare International Airport, and now there are two at Midway.

The lanes have four loading zones where people can place their belongings in bins at the same time.

The bins are about 25 percent bigger than the old ones and they run on a parallel conveyer belt. Empty bins are automatically moved to the front of the line.

Bags that need additional screening are automatically pulled out of the lane so it does not hold up the process.

TSA officials say they expect these new screening lanes to be much more efficient than the old ones.

TSA officials are also sharing some holiday travel tips:

  • First, you should apply for TSA Precheck for more convenience. If you don't have Precheck, prepare for security when packing.
  • Follow the 3-1-1 Liquids Rule for your carry-on. That's the rule which allows passengers to bring a quart-sized bag of liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes through the checkpoint. These are limited to 3.4 ounces or less per item.
  • Have your ID and boarding pass ready when you enter the checkpoint.

TSA officials say they expect all the old screeners to be swapped out with the new technology by the end of 2019.