Stacks of magazines in some South By Southwest attendees’ bags are registering as suspicious objects at the airport in Austin and causing delays, leaving many to ask, how could this happen?
Weirdest thing I have ever heard but apparently this #sxsw magazine issue has been delaying flights all day. Don’t bring it with you.
— Wesley Barrow (@wesleybarrow) March 12, 2014
— Michael Schneider (@msfd) March 12, 2014
— Zachary Draper (@ZacharyDraper) March 12, 2014
Jim Halbrook, a spokesman for Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, told ABCNews.com today that the security snafu wasn’t due to any particular magazine, but instead stacks of them.
“There are some of the attendees who have their swag bags and they have every magazine they’ve picked up in that one bag,” he said. “When it goes through checked bag screening , it’s showing up as an unidentifiable object because it’s so dense.”
Halbrook said he was unaware if it had impacted any flight departure times but said it has slowed down luggage processing, since TSA agents have had to search the suspicious bags by hand.
According to Flight Aware, 21 flights were delayed at the airport today, however it was unclear if any of those were attributed to the magazine security issue.