DFW INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, Texas (December 10, 2002) –DFW crews began taking down barricades at the Airport's 2,700 closest parking places to the terminals today, following close collaboration with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to re-open the spaces. The spaces, which have been closed since the terrorist attacks of September 11, will now again be available for one-hour parking, enabling "meeters and greeters" easier access to DFW's four terminals.
The spaces will remain open as long as the U.S. is under a “code yellow” security notice as authorized by Homeland Security.
"DFW continues to be in the forefront of 'real airport security' and this will restore an important guest convenience while keeping tight security curbside and near the terminals," says Jim Crites, executive vice president of operations at DFW. "We are grateful to the TSA for providing a solution that addresses this important issue."
DFW was the first airport in the entire country to regain most of its closein terminal parking after the events of September 11 last year. More than 16,000 spaces re-opened with the Airport as a result of DFW's blast analysis done after the Persian Gulf War. However, 2,700 spaces across four terminal garages have remained closed.
As the spaces re-open, DFW's Department of Public Safety will continue to patrol all garages for suspicious vehicles, and strictly enforce the "no unattended parking" laws at the curbside. Since October 2001 of last year, the Airport has issued more than 27,000 citations for unattended vehicles and towed more than 250 cars.
"Most people tell us 'I was just gone for a minute' but that's a minute too long in our zero-tolerance security policies at the Airport," says Alvy Dodson, DFW vice-president of public safety. "Hopefully by re-opening those one-hour spaces, there will be less temptation to leave a car unattended, but rest assured we will continue to ticket and tow as needed."
To further reinforce terminal security, the Airport has been installing 58 concrete bollards in front of all entrances. The bollards, installed in October, are three feet tall and four feet in diameter.
The re-opening of the one-hour parking spaces are especially timely, given the upcoming holiday season. However, DFW and the TSA could close the parking area again in the future if there was a dramatic change in the Homeland Security color code or a specific threat at the Airport.
Our plans to preserve our parking in the future are to inspect vehicles as they enter the Airport at our parking entry/exit plazas. Such inspections, we believe, will effectively address this important area of security no matter what threat level our nation is faced with.
"DFW has been vigilant since September 11 and we will always do what's best for our guests to balance great security and great customer service," says Crites.
Located halfway between the cities of Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas, DFW International Airport is the world's third busiest, offering nearly 2,000 flights per day and serving 55 million passengers a year. DFW International Airport provides non-stop service to 130 domestic and 31 international destinations worldwide.
Editor's Notes: This release, and past news releases issued by DFW International Airport, are available online at www.dfwairport.com in the “MediaSite” section.
For the latest news, real-time flight information, parking availability or details regarding the many services provided at DFW International Airport, log on to www.dfwairport.com. To arrange interviews contact DFW Public Affairs at 972 574 NEWS (6397) or Ken Capps, APR, Vice President Public Affairs, email@example.com.