Broken x-ray machine at YLW causes back-ups, some passengers left behind

Security delay strands some

Some passengers missed their flights at Kelowna International Airport Monday morning after one of the x-ray machines in security screening malfunctioned.

Phillip Elchitz, senior manager of Kelowna airport operations, says they typically have four security lines running during the morning peak allowing them to process 500 passengers an hour.

Capacity at YLW was cut by 25 per cent Monday morning, "as a result of that, we saw very long lines."

Monday mornings are typically one of the busier flight days at YLW with 12 flights set to depart between 8 a.m. and 10 a.m.

"The combination of the heavy loads and the piece of equipment that was unusable resulted in longer lines than we're comfortable with," Elchitz said.

YLW has ordered a part for the x-ray machine from Vancouver and Elchitz is confident repairs will be made before Tuesday morning, "we should have that extra line back up and running for tomorrow morning's peak."

To help alleviate Monday's crunch at security some passengers were pulled ahead in an effort to help them catch their flights.

"We looked at which flights were boarding and we went through the line. And we we pulled those people forward who were going to be late for those flights. That was very helpful. But unfortunately, some people still missed their flights," Elchitz said.

YLW shows how long the expected wait times are for security screening on its departure website, but Elchitz says this is another example of why it's important to arrive two hours prior to your flights departure.

"Sometimes there's lineups at check-in and sometimes there's lineups at the security screening points. So arriving early is the best way to ensure you'll make your flight."

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