Government Shutdown Forcing Miami Airport To Close Terminal

A TSA staffing shortage is leading the airport to temporarily close a terminal used by United Airlines.

Miami International Airport plans to close off one of its terminals this weekend due to staffing shortages caused by the ongoing partial government shutdown.

Airport spokesman Greg Chin told the Miami Herald that the security checkpoint at the G terminal is expected to be closed starting at 1 p.m. local time Saturday, the 22nd day of the federal government’s partial shutdown. Transportation Security Administration workers who would normally screen that terminal will be moved to busier checkpoints.

“We felt we had to make a decision before the weekend,” Chin told the Herald. “They’re erring on the side of caution.”

Planes will be able to drop off passengers at the terminal during the closure, but departing passengers won’t have gate access. The terminal is expected to open Sunday and Monday for morning flights before closing again in the afternoons, Chin said. 

United, Frontier and Bahamas Air are among the airlines found in Terminal G. 

United said it does not anticipate any negative impact from the closure, as it plans to use gates in two other terminals. The airline said it will also tell customers to arrive early and to double-check their departure gate.

“We will work to ensure we do everything we can for our customers flying through Miami, and continue to work closely with the TSA and other relevant agencies,” United spokeswoman Andrea Hiller told HuffPost.

Hundreds of thousands of federal employees, including TSA workers, missed their first paycheck on Friday. TSA employees have been either working without pay throughout the shutdown or increasingly calling in sick as they look for new jobs or take on extra work to pay the bills. 

Aviation industry workers gathered outside the U.S. Capitol on Thursday to call for ending the shutdown. President Donald Trump remains no closer to ending his stalemate with Democrats over his demand for $5.7 billion to build a border wall.

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