Wait times at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport were back to normal Saturday afternoon even as passengers faced more stringent security procedures following a failed attack on a Northwest Airlines plane.
A Nigerian passenger, who said he was acting on al-Qaida's instructions, tried to blow up the plane Friday as it was landing in Detroit en route from Amsterdam, law enforcement and national security officials said.
"We are working closely with local and federal agencies and have implemented additional security measures in coordination with the [Transportation Security Administration]," Hartsfield-Jackson spokesman John Kennedy said in a written statement.
Traffic is lighter than you'd expect at the airport today, Kennedy told the AJC Saturday morning, but the next two days should provide a more accurate barometer of how tighter security will impact wait times.
"We don't get busy again until Sunday," Kennedy said. A quarter million passengers are expected to pass through Hartsfield-Jackson on Sunday, with Monday's volume being about the same.
The Department of Homeland Security said Friday that "passengers may notice additional screening measures put into place to ensure the safety of the traveling public on domestic and international flights."
"As always, we encourage the traveling public to be observant and aware of their surroundings and report any suspicious behavior or activity to law enforcement officials," said DHS in a statement. The agency also urged those with future travel plans to "stay in touch with their airline" and check www.tsa.gov for updates. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano is "closely monitoring the situation," according to the agency's statement.
In a statement, Delta said it is "cooperating fully with authorities." Delta said the passenger was "subdued immediately" and the Airbus 330-300 flight with 278 passengers landed safely. The crew asked for law enforcement to meet the flight upon arrival and the passenger was taken into custody and questioned by law enforcement.
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.