NEW YORK CITY - Two kayakers who found themselves up Jamaica Bay without a paddle emerged from the water at New York's John F. Kennedy Airport this weekend, drawing summonses for themselves and a bit of embarrassment for airport security.
The airport fancies itself among the safest in the world thanks in part to its Perimeter Intrusion Detection System, a $100 million-plus web of surveillance cameras and motion detectors designed to ensure that nobody breaches the 12-square-mile property in Queens undetected.
But for the second time in less than two years, the airport perimeter was breached by wayward boaters. Jordan Crooms, 21, told the New York Post that he and buddy Anthony Giglio, 21, had set out from a park across the bay. Things got shaky when their kayak flipped and two of their paddles disappeared in the confusion.
"We had one paddle left," Jordan Crooms told the Post. "We were going toward the closest spot to shore."
They washed up Saturday morning past the end of Kennedy's Runway 4L, undetected by security. It was the same runway where a man scaled an 8-foot fence and walked into the airport after his jet ski ran out of gas in August 2012. In both cases, the airport's detection system sounded no warnings.
Airport workers found the kayakers on a navigational pier at the end of a runway early Saturday morning. Port Authority Police said it issued them summonses.
The Post notes that Port Authority boat patrols around Kennedy were canceled last year to save money.
"Once again a perimeter security breach at JFK Airport raises serious concerns about the Port Authority's Perimeter Intrusion Detection System, a system the PAPBA believes is a failure," the Port Authority police union said in a statement. "The PA has the vessels, purchased with federal funds, and Coast Guard-certified marine police officers to perform a 24-hour marine perimeter patrol with rescue capability."
Contributing: Associated Press
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