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All is not lost at Canadian airports


Published: 07/22/2015

by Marcus Johnson

CATSA reminds everyone planning to travel by air this summer to collect all their belongings at the end of the screening process. For additional information on airport security screening, including tips on how to breeze through security, visit or Twitter (@catsa_gc).

Last year, thousands of travellers forgot items at airport security checkpoints across the country. But did you know that almost 2,000 of these items were returned to passengers thanks to the vigilance of screening officers, including 615 laptops, 274 carry-on bags, 239 phones, 120 passports, 114 wallets and 104 watches.

When screening officers notice an item accidentally left at the checkpoint, they immediately contact the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority's (CATSA's) operations centre in Ottawa. Within minutes, individuals are identified using surveillance cameras and CATSA's boarding pass scanning system, and the information is relayed back to screening officers who – in many cases – are able to return items to passengers before they board their flights.

July and August are the busiest months of the year at Canadian airports. With more than 10 million passengers expected to go through screening this summer, activity at the security checkpoints is likely to be busy and fast-paced at times. As boarding passes are presented to screening officers, bags are placed on tables, laptops and liquids, aerosols and gels are taken out of bags, and jewelry, jackets, hats, belts and sometimes shoes are removed and placed in the bins, things can get hectic. Add in a couple of kids that need to be watched and it's not surprising that items get left behind.

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