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Body Scanner In Use At RC Airport

December 16, 2011, 10:02 PM by Derek Olson

Body Scanner In Use At RC Airport
RAPID CITY, SD - You may notice some changes the next time you go through airport security. A South Dakota airport has the state's first body scanner.

Nationally they've caused some controversy, but passenger Melissa Cosme found Rapid City Regional Airport's newest piece of equipment surprisingly convenient.

"It's quick, easy and I liked it. It's easier than the regular metal detectors," Cosme said.

The scanners produce detailed images of passengers bodies. Some people may not like that, but it's something Cosme is willing to sacrifice for the added security.

"It doesn't feel like you're being scanned or like they're going to see everything. For security reasons I'm okay with it," Cosme said. 

Although the body scanners have been in operation at larger airports for months now, this is the first one in operation in the entire state of South Dakota.

"This was really based on timing and opportunity. They saw the fact that the Rapid City Regional Airport was expanding its security checkpoint and they realized it as an opportunity to field their latest equipment rather than coming in and moving over their old equipment," Rapid City Regional Airport executive director Cameron Humphres said.

The terminal has been under construction for much of the last year, and the scanner is one of the most important additions.

"The security checkpoint expansion was a really important part of the overall project for preparing this terminal for the next 25 years," Humphres said.

If all goes well, this probably won't be the last body scanner to arrive at a south dakota airport.

"You know, anything can happen. And when they can see everything with those scanners, I'm okay with that," Cosme said.

Today was the first day that Rapid City's body scanner was put into action. The TSA hasn't said when they expect other South Dakota airports will receive the technology.

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