Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky airport (CVG) and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) have collaborated to use BlipTrack technology to use live and empiric data to meet growing passenger demands and reduce security checkpoint wait times.

The airport, named Skytrax best world airport, serves five to 10 million passengers a year. Owing to an increase in carrier and traveller numbers, the airport implemented BlipTrack queue and flow technology at TSA checkpoints in 2014, making it the first US airport to utilise this solution. By analysing trends in traffic through security, the airport has been able to allocate appropriate staff levels to improve the customer experience.

Due to the data collected, staff were able to reduce the TSA security queue wait times by a third within a year, from 13.2 minutes in 2011 to 8.9 in 2015. The airport has since added new features to streamline operations further, including passenger-facing wait time monitors designed to inform travellers of the current expected queue size, as well as service level agreement-style standards meant to ensure security wait times of 15 minutes or less. In Q2 this year, the average wait time for screening was 11 minutes and 28 seconds.

Stephen Saunders, senior manager of terminal operations at CVG, explained: “We have used tangible data to work with our partners at TSA to adjust officer start time. We previously noticed a high spike in queue waits during our heaviest early bank of morning flights, levelling off after about 7.30am. We collectively identified TSA schedules were misaligned with the flight schedules. Because of this data, we recommended staffing adjustments to the local TSA leaders, which ultimately passengers and airlines benefited as evidenced by a near-immediate reduction in wait times below target and customer compliments via the airport’s social media platforms. We remain engaged with TSA HQ in an attempt to collaborate to make real changes using this technology.”

More than 25 international airports are now using BlipTrack technology, including JFK, San Diego, Copenhagen, Dublin, Oslo, Manchester and Brussels. The solution is also being utilised in road traffic applications in Switzerland, Thailand, New Zealand, the UK, Denmark and Sweden, as well as in ports, train stations and large-scale events around the world.

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