MIAMI — Jan 11, 2019, 10:55 AM ET

Miami airport to close terminal as gov shutdown continues


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Miami International Airport is closing a terminal this weekend because security screeners have been calling in sick at twice the airport's normal rate as the federal government shutdown stretches toward a fourth week.

Friday marks the first day screeners will miss a paycheck, and airport spokesman Greg Chin said there's a concern there won't be enough workers to handle all 11 checkpoints during normal hours over the weekend.

Chin said Terminal G will close at 1 p.m. Saturday, reopen for flights Sunday morning and close again at 1 p.m. that day. The terminal serves United Airlines along with smaller carriers. Its closure means restaurants and shops that depend on departing flights also will close.

"We felt we had to make a decision before the weekend," Chin said. "They're erring on the side of caution."

Chin told The Miami Herald that some passengers have complained about longer waits, but there've been no abnormal security delays.

The security line outside Terminal G was relatively calm mid-morning Friday where about 20 people waited in line as a single security agent manned the checkpoint.

Jorge Enrique stood in line with his family as they waited to board a flight home to Mexico.

He felt bad for passengers flying this weekend who could be inconvenienced when the terminal closes. He said he was more concerned about the hassle than potential security risks.

"It sucks because if I had a flight arranged for that time ... it's gonna really impact my travel plans," said the 35-year-old who was vacationing in Florida with his wife and son.

Terminal G is the slowest concourse at the airport, with about 12 planes a day flying out after 1 p.m. That's about 3 percent of the roughly 450 flights that depart each day. Terminal G's flights will be diverted to other terminals this weekend.

But Chin said that if the shutdown continues and additional screeners don't show up for work, the airport could be forced to close a security checkpoint at terminals that have multiple entry points, such as Concourse J or Concourse D.


Information from: The Miami Herald,

News - Miami airport to close terminal as gov shutdown continues

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  • Fred Anderson

    I hope that others will be inspired by what is going on in Miami and follow in their footsteps until our federal government is reopened. The more facilities that are shut down, regardless of any relation to the federal government, the more likely a deal will be reached to reopen the federal government. This is a ridiculous situation that requires a ridiculous action if it is to be resolved.

  • mark2789

    ...They will adapt, they are good at adapting... After having several garage sales along with painting the neighbors fence to afford the airline ticket they will then train their friends to handle airport security by having them play non stop games of clue for a week.

  • arlecchino

    Good more people are cursing trump as we speak, the unstoppable erosion of trump supporters

  • Jesus needs talcum

    I'm sure Trump supporters think that is a non-essential terminal.

  • TexWho

    Emergency: an unforeseen combination of circumstances or the resulting state that calls for immediate action

    By definition since he has waited to declare it then it is NOT an emergency

  • kritikosman

    It's all downhill from here for trump.

  • Alvin "Creepy" Karpis

    All this winning is getting tiresome. But it is helping secure a loss for Trump in 2020.

  • Walter Bunting

    The Mad Hatter is sure bringing chaos to your country. No wonder he went bankrupt six times.
    No other western democracy would put up having a mad man like Trump continue to lead their country. Sad. The inmates are clearly running the asylum. Sad.

  • Flippykitty

    "security screeners have been calling in sick at twice the airport's normal rate"

    Hm... that Trump sickness is going around, eh?

  • RohnertPark1

    For all those that are ticked off because of this "inconvenience" why don't you try going out with your paycheck? Frankly, I am surprised the government employees affected by Trump's ridiculous shut down have not gone out on strike!

  • Don't come here

    A most unfortunate occurence.

  • TexasVulcan

    Thanks President Trump.

  • Satinismelord

    Another reason to stop voting for Republicans, all those Cubans down there, keep voting Republican, this is what you get! "I am proud to shutdown the government for border security!" - Trump

  • Rascal262

    I wonder at what point Trump stopped being proud of this?

  • NewsJunkie12

    Come on in, terrorists. No TSA to check you. This is pretty much an invitation from Trump for terrorists to come and get us.

  • Jim J.

    Closing a terminal sounds like a smart business move. The holidays are over and so I assume traffic is down somewhat. I guess the problem is, if more terminals in more places close...eventually the backup would become phenomenal.

  • 2 Tango - SP Augie

    If you've never lived "pay-check to pay-check", you should try it. It's no fun. what do I "need" to get and what do I "want" to get. You have to make "this or that" decisions every paycheck

  • c0reDump

    I'd be "sick" too if I wasn't getting paid. Don't blame them one bit.

  • roxwella

    The real question is, why in the name of god did we allow the federal government to take over the security line at the airport? 911? It is a joke of an agency, staffed by half trained children.

  • hucky01

    It probably won't be long until the TSA requires a note from a Doctor for the sick absence. Or they may face discipline charges.

  • Nearl56 12

    Nice going Trump!

    All essential employees should just stand down for a day.

    All airports would close.

  • srichey321

    Welp, things are going to get very interesting.

    I say it could get even more interesting if federal workers in Washington D.C. simply walk off the job.

  • Dodger

    The part that is crazy is they will get back pay and have an extra 2 week vacation.

  • maggie

    Of the 4000 terrorist stopped from comping into the country, the vast majority were stopped at airports by the security staff that's not getting paid. If I were allocating money to protect us, based on the DATA, I centainly would support these people over a couple hundered miles of wall on a multi-thousand mile mile border. Or raise taxes to get the money to both........

  • paddyk

    TSA pays nothing, you can't blame people for not showing up or just quitting.

  • Bill S

    A start, closing down airports over this shut down will add an extra urgency to ending the stand off

  • Renate

    Its nice they can go on unemployment. When the furloughs happened at the Navy base near Harrisburg in 2013, they forced us to take time off but only 2 days a paycheck. That way we would be unable to get unemployment. This went on for 3 months. We NEVER got paid for all those days.

  • Pologize3

    Thanks, Donald.

  • CatMom

    Every day I read the news & every day Individual 1 does something more heinous than the day before. It's sickening. I still have to wonder why he's still in office and why the folks who 'support' him are acting the way they do.

  • arlecchino

    If all those federal workers and their family AND all the people effected negatively by the "trump shutdown" were to call non stop the real person with the power to end this crooked senator Mc Connell, the shut down would end, Mc Connell is as much of a malignant personality as trump.

  • Prophet With Honor

    Ripple effect.

  • I Luv U

    Its all because of a wall.

  • Don'tBotherMe

    And now the real shutdown begins.

  • Blue Wave

    Can we next close the WH?

  • J-dawg

    At some point, you're going to lose the ability to operate air travel. Air Traffic Controllers may be dedicated to their work, but after a month or more of not getting paid, people are going to need to find new jobs to support themselves and their families.

  • Kalinysta

    Hopefully, this will encourage people to throw the GOP out of office on all levels, including local and state.

  • John_Cabal

    Government websites going down as well - welcome to the banana republic of Trump

  • Reply

    Wait until terminal delays and closures hit airports like ATL, MSP, ORD, LAX, etc. There are gonna be some mighty unhappy travelers.