TSA officer dies after falling from balcony inside Orlando airport


An on-duty TSA officer fell to his death from a hotel balcony inside the Orlando International Airport on Saturday, causing delays and long lines at security checkpoints, according to federal and local officials.

A man may have jumped from a balcony of the Hyatt Regency Hotel at the Orlando International Airport into the atrium of the airport, according to a statement from the airport on Saturday. The hotel is located inside the airport’s main terminal.

In a tweet, the Orlando Police Department said the man, who was in his 40s, was found in the atrium in critical condition and later died after being transported to a hospital. Police called the death an “apparent suicide.”

Image: Orlando International Airport

After the man landed in the atrium, startled passengers entered the “sterile area” past the TSA screening area, requiring the airport to re-screen all passengers between terminals 70 and 129, according to the airport’s statement.

Photos on Twitter showed what appeared to be long lines at the TSA and massive crowds gathering to be re-checked.

The incident also caused major backlogs for air traffic coming in and out of the airport.

Just before 12 p.m. ET, there were more than 120 delays and nearly 50 cancellations at Orlando International Airport, according to flight tracking website FlightAware.

In a statement, the TSA said it was working with local authorities to resume normal airport operations.

The TSA offered condolences to the officer’s family, friends and fellow employees.

The agent who fell was not immediately identified. A TSA spokesperson said the agent had completed his shift and had checked out prior to the incident.

The Orlando Police Department tweeted to confirm the incident was isolated to the atrium area and that there was no threat to the airport.

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