Passenger accidentally ends up in secure area at Atlanta airport - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Passenger accidentally ends up in secure area at Atlanta airport

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A local woman said she was part of a security breakdown at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.  The Norcross woman was trying to make an international flight but instead ended up outside near the runway.

Shannon Reynolds said she had paid in advance for a "park and ride" lot near the airport, where you park your car and then take a shuttle to the airport.  She says she pulled into the wrong lot an employee lot, but didn't realize it until she had made it all the way to the tarmac.

Reynolds says it was still dark that morning and she didn't see the Delta employee sign.  She says she breezed through not just one but two checkpoints before parking.

"Actually took a picture of the parking spot so I could remember which one it was. I got on the shuttle bus," Reynolds said.

When that bus stopped, Reynolds says she was looking at a plane nowhere near the airport entrance.

"Some guy came from behind and said, 'Come on with me. I'll help you.' He took me up the stairs, from the tarmac and the next thing I knew I was standing in the C terminal," Reynolds said.

That's when an employee inside noticed that something wasn't right and Reynolds says she was asked for her airline credentials.

"I was wearing a sundress, had a suitcase in my hand. I said, 'What are you talking about? I don't have any credentials.' And she said, 'You don't work for Delta?' Reynolds said.

As Atlanta police officers questioned Reynolds, she missed her flight to Costa Rica.

Reynolds says she's sharing her story to make others aware of what she calls a security breakdown.

A TSA spokesperson told FOX 5,  "airports are responsible for implementing security programs that restrict access to secure areas" and that the agency is now "conducting an investigation."

Delta issued a statement saying, "We have taken aggressive action with our security vendors at the parking lot to emphasize that all security procedures, especially verification of credentials, are strictly adhered to."

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