New Automated Explosives Screener at Sawyer

Sawyer Airport has a new piece of technology that should make it easier and faster to check a piece of luggage.

The Transportation Security Administration recently used stimulus money to buy a new screening device for the airport.

It’s a Reveal explosives detection system, and it costs nearly $350,000.

Every checked bag being loaded onto an outbound plane is run through it.

Sawyer Airport manager Keith Kaspari says he doesn’t know what criteria TSA used to decide to place a screening unit at the airport.

But he says as soon as he heard last year that TSA would buy the units, he asked the agency to place one at Sawyer because more than half of the U.P.’s air traffic comes through it.

The Reveal device is fully automated.

That removes the need for TSA employees to manually swab each checked bag.

It should also be much more rare for checked bags to be opened and inspected visually.

Sawyer is one of about 140 American airports that has at least one of the screening units.