Sioux Falls air travelers feel safe flying during anniversary of 9/11

Local News

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — One of the lasting effects of the tragedy of 9/11 unfolds every day in the airport terminal. The plane hijackings prompted much tighter airport security measures across the country that are still in place today.

Sioux Falls dentists Dan and Jamie Kohler are taking-off on a hiking getaway to the state of Maine.

“It’s a good time of year for it, now that the leaves are changing and the weather’s a little bit cooler,” Jamie Kohler said.

The Kohlers are flying at a time when the nation remembers the tragedy of September 11th and the security measures that went into effect following the attacks.

“It’s hard to process it at the time, but now, looking back on it, the significance of it and how it still affects us to this day, it’s a lot to think about, but as far as the traveling goes, I’m not worried,” Dan Kohler said.

TSA says air travel is far safer now than before 9/11, because of better-trained security staff and beefed-up screenings.

“Technology that includes your body scanners, two-dimensional x-rays, in color, they can identify threat items in a bag and it starts with an identification process and knowing who the passengers are,” TSA Federal Security Director of South Dakota Mark Heisey said.

While Heisey says there’s no credible terror threat as the 9/11 anniversary approaches, his security workers will remain alert.

“It’s an anniversary, like every year, we just generally tell our workforce to be vigilant during this weekend, Heisey said.

TSA handed out these commemorative coins to each employee here at the Sioux Falls airport in honor of the lives lost on 9/11.

“We’re standing ready, vigilant as we always have and our theme is not on our watch,” Heisey said.

The Sioux Falls Regional Airport will hold a moment of silence Saturday morning at the precise moment the first plane struck the World Trade Center, 20 years ago.

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