May 1, 2020 - Today in the world of coronavirus news.
More than 500 Transportation Security Administration employees have tested positive for the coronavirus, according to the agency’s COVID-19 data page.
As of Thursday morning, the page indicates that 505 employees have tested positive, and among those, 212 have recovered and five have died.
In a chart, TSA also lists the confirmed cases at each airport, which is split between the number of TSA screening officers and non-screening employees. The list includes the last work date of the most recent screening officer who tested positive. The list doesn’t include non-airport TSA employees or contractors who have limited interaction with the public. TSA has approximately 50-thousand employees at 440 federalized airports.
“Passengers who believe they may have come in contact with an infected individual within the past 14 days should follow the CDC’s recommendations for travel-associated exposure,” according to the TSA website.
According to the chart, positive cases were largest in major cities. About 40 percent were in the three major airports that serve the New York City area. John F. Kennedy International Airport has 105 employees who tested positive, LaGuardia Airport has 32 employees who tested positive, and Newark Liberty International Airport has 56 employees who tested positive.
Here are other major airports and their total confirmed cases:
- Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport: 27
- Miami International Airport: 18
- Denver International Airport: 17
- Logan International Airport in Boston: 16
- Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport in Florida: 16
- Chicago O’Hare International Airport: 14
- Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport: 14
- Orlando International Airport: 14
- Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport: 13
- Los Angeles International Airport: 11
On Wednesday, TSA issued a statement after Mark Barisonek, a TSA officer at the Newark Liberty International Airport, died from COVID-19 on Tuesday.
“For nearly 16 years, Mark dedicated his career to the TSA mission. He was an integral member of Team Newark and will be remembered fondly by those who knew him and worked alongside him,” according to the statement.
Barisonek is the second TSA member at the Newark airport to die from COVID-19. Francis “Frank” Boccabella III, an explosive detection canine handler, died on April 2. Boccabella was the first TSA employee to die from COVID-19.