The terrorist attacks on New York City and Washington, D.C., Tuesday shut down air travel in the U.S., and when airports reopen, travelers can expect some noticeable changes.
Historically at the Brainerd-Crow Wing County Regional Airport passengers haven't been screened before boarding, but Steve Sievek, airport manager, said that will change when service is expected to resume Friday.
Random searches, baggage inspection, pat-downs and wand screens will be implemented at the airport.
Standing law enforcement is also a possibility at the airport, though to what degree and level Sievek was unsure.
"We're a category 5 airport and exempt from a lot of security measures required at a larger airport like Minneapolis-St. Paul," Sievek said. "But people can expect some of those rules to be changed."
Sievek said several passengers have called the airport wondering when flights will resume, but he said it could take some time before everything is running normally.
Northwest Airlines said it would begin booking some flights on today, but travelers are likely to endure longer waits at the Twin Cities airport during an indefinite tightening of security.
With many airports opening for business today, area travel agents are also scrambling to make sure their customers get to where they need to go.
Susan Haas, director of travel services with Navigator Travel Center in Baxter, has been working with customers since the attacks and most have been accommodated on other flights.
Haas does have about 12 customers she has been trying to help find transportation by working through other carriers, travel companies and has advised business travelers who have rental cars to hold onto them.
Despite the hassle of making refunds and reorganizing travel plans, Haas said everybody she has talked to has kept perspective of the situation.
"So far everybody's been calm, nobody is freaking out," she said, but added the travel fallout might not happen until next week, when full flights resume.
The future of airline travel is also going to change, travel agents feel. Denise Hanson, owner of Up North travel agency in Emily, said people might not be as willing to travel by plane, especially for leisure purposes.
"People could be real leery," said Hanson, who has been fortunate in not having any customers stuck in cities waiting for the airlines to reopen. "If they don't have to go somewhere, they won't."
Haas advises people not to cancel travel plans in the wake of the terrorist attacks, and if anyone has any concerns or questions about traveling to call a travel agent.
"If people start backing off from their rights and freedoms, we've lost," Haas said.
(The Associated Press contributed to this story.)
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