DFW Airport implements safety procedures


Jocelyn Pazita Gomez

Previously installed touch screens at DFW airport will now connect you to a customer service representative. This is one of many new safety procedures incorporated at the airport due to the pandemic.

Jocelyn Pazita Gomez, Contributing Writer

Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport has further enhanced touch screens that were implemented in 2011 as part of their new safety measures. This is in addition to sanitation, plexiglass shields and requiring face masks. 

After passengers have gone through Transportation Security Administration and gathered their items, a vertical small TV-sized touch screen with a bright orange information circular topper greets passengers exiting the security checkpoint. Initially, the screen allowed passengers to access information like the closest restaurant to their gate. Now, the screen allows you to connect with a specialist sitting at a desk at a nearby office in Terminal D, the airport’s international terminal.

“Basically, [it’s] a new way for customer experience staff to engage with the public,” Robert Montalbo, a DFW Airport customer experience specialist, said. “I am online at the desk, and I appear on a screen downstairs at the D22 checkpoint. My screen shows my image. If a passenger walks by the screen and sees me, they can walk up to the screen and ask me a question.”

DFW Airport has made several changes to address employee safety during this time, according to Dashawn Harris, a customer experience specialist. They installed plexiglass in customer service areas, provided safe bags with hand sanitizers and face masks for employees, installed extra hand sanitizer dispensers, included face masks in vending machines and added a different cleaning company to assist with only sanitizing throughout the airport.  

About 75 million passengers used DFW Airport in 2019, according to NBC 5. That number is projected to drop to 45 million this year. In a July interview with NBC News, Donohue said: “Typically we would serve about 200,000 customers a day at DFW [Airport]. In early April we were serving 10,000.”

DFW Airport was the country’s busiest airport with 20,488 scheduled flights in July 2020, according to NBC News. The airport had a total of 27,230 recorded takeoffs and landings in May, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

DFW Airport leadership has been actively advising employees and staying positive during the whole pandemic. Employees faced a lot of unknown answers and doubts about possible unemployment. Harris said: “Leadership has been great to us, they send us emails keeping us informed with what was going on with funding and new procedures that are taking place. … Also, allowing us to work from home and accommodate families with children that are doing virtual learning.”

According to NBC News, the airport added another custodial team named the Strike Team whose job focuses on sanitizing throughout the airport. “Since January, DFW Airport has been committed to enhanced sanitization and safety measures,” Ken Buchanan, executive vice president of revenue management at DFW Airport, said.