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TSA expands PreCheck to Naval Academy mids, other military students

Naval Academy mids will be able to fly with a little less hassle now.

Midshipmen at the Naval Academy in Annapolis and other students at U.S. military institutions will now be able to pass through airports with a little less hassle.

The Transportation Security Administration on Monday extended access to its PreCheck expedited screening process to students at the Naval Academy and the U.S. Military Academy, Coast Guard Academy and Air Force Academy.

"This week, as we recognize veterans of our armed forces, we are grateful to the brave men and women in uniform who continue to serve our nation with honor and distinction," said TSA Administrator John S. Pistole in a statement. "Providing expedited screening while on travel is the least we can do for our military and service academies."

Participants in the PreCheck program can leave on their shoes, light coats and belts and keep laptop computers in carry-on bags as they are screened through security at 120 airports where the program is in effect, including at BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport in Anne Arundel County.

Eleven major airlines participate in the program, often providing access for rewards program fliers. Southwest Airlines, which along with subsidiary AirTran operates more than 70 percent of flights at BWI, joined the program last year.

The extension of the trusted flier program to midshipmen and cadets comes as part of an ongoing partnership between the TSA and the Department of Defense. The TSA extended its PreCheck program to include all U.S. Armed Forces service members last year.

Adm. James Winnefeld, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, thanked the TSA for its support of military members.

"From their enhanced veterans recruitment efforts to the expedited Wounded Warrior Screening Program, TSA continues to make a positive difference with our veterans," Winnefeld said in a statement thanking the TSA for extending the program to cadets and midshipmen of the academies.

Midshipmen and other military academy students should use their Department of Defense identification numbers when signing up for PreCheck, the TSA said.

krector@baltsun.com

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