US-bound passengers changing planes in Trinidad must undergo security screening again

Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 August 2016, 10:03 by Denis Chabrol

The Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA) on Wednesday confirmed that passengers travelling from the United States (US) via Port of Spain would now have to undergo screening if they are changing aircraft.

The CJIA said that decision applies to everyone transiting Trinidad’s Piarco International Airport on Caribbean Airlines and all other foreign carriers.

“With immediate effect, transfer and transit passengers travelling from Guyana to the United States of America (USA) via Port of Spain on Caribbean Airlines or any other foreign carriers will now have to be rescreened in Port of Spain if they are changing or required to deplane the aircraft,” the CJIA said.

The airport’s management said the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) was advised by Trinidad and Tobago Civil Aviation Authority (TTCAA) over the weekend of the United States Transportation Security Administration’s (US-TSA) new Emergency Amendment regarding security measures for foreign aircraft operators operating into the United States from the Last Point of Departure (LPD) including Piarco.

The CJIA said to facilitate the requirements of the US-TSA Emergency Amendment, TTCAA informed GCAA that the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the Mutual Recognition of Aviation Security Measures between Trinidad and Tobago and Guyana is suspended in accordance with Article 10 (d) of the MoU.

In 2015, when the MOU was signed it was agreed that Georgetown’s (GEO) northbound passengers transiting Port of Spain (POS) would not have to be re-screened, instead were escorted to the Departures Lounge for their connecting flight.

The TTCAA said the US TSA Emergency Amendment directs aircraft operators to screen all transfer and transit passengers and their accessible property at the Piarco International Airport as the LPD when travelling to the United States, prior to boarding the aircraft. “Consequently, passengers originating from Guyana and other destinations transferring at the Piarco International Airport to the United States must undergo security screening together with their accessible property.”

The TTCA says it regrets any inconvenience to passengers travelling from Guyana and transferring at the Piarco International Airport which may have been caused by the suspension of the MOU as a result of the TSA Emergency Amendment.

The TTCAA says it continues to collaborate with the United States Department of Homeland Security TSA and the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority with a view to improving the security processing of passengers originating from Guyana and transferring at the Piarco International Airport to the United States.