TSA Officer Jumps to His Death at Orlando Airport in Apparent Suicide

February 2, 2019 Updated: February 2, 2019

An officer from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) fell to his death off a hotel balcony inside Florida’s busiest airport on Feb. 2, creating chaos among passengers who were waiting in line at security checkpoints.

Authorities said the 40-year-old man jumped from the Hyatt Regency Hotel into the atrium area of Orlando International Airport at 9:30 a.m. He was found in a critical condition and later pronounced dead in hospital.

Passengers stranded at Orlando International Airport on Feb. 2, 2019. (Jonathan Hayward/The Canadian Press via AP)

Police said the initial investigation suggests that the incident was an apparent suicide.

“Our hearts are with the family during this very difficult time,” Orlando police said in a statement.

According to a statement from TSA, several panicked passengers rushed past the security checkpoints unscreened after the man fell. The confusion and temporary closure at the checkpoints were then causing flight delays.

“TSA will be rescreening passengers and will continue to work with the Orlando Police Department and the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority to return operations to normal,” the statement said.

About two hours after the incident, Orlando International Airport tweeted that the security checkpoint wait time was less than 15 minutes.

The airport said they were working toward normal operations and reminded passengers going to the airport to allow extra time to get through security.

The TSA offered its condolences to the man’s family, according to their statement. The man has not yet been identified by the authorities.

According to flight tracking website FlightAware, there were over 90 flight cancellations and 180 delays at the airport, as of 4:40 p.m. on Feb. 2.

Passengers stranded at Orlando International Airport on Feb. 2, 2019. (Jonathan Hayward/The Canadian Press via AP)
Follow Janita on Twitter: @janitakan
RECOMMENDED