Security Screening Misses Potential Weapons

April 10, 2010

in Airport Stories

I consider myself a rather experienced traveler. I have MVP status and travel for business and pleasure. I also have a routine prior to traveling – when I pack I take my drill and tool kit out of my laptop bag and put it in my checked baggage.

It was a hectic Monday morning when I arrived at the airport; I was also running later than normal. I checked my bag and went to the security screening process. Once there I was “forced” into the casual traveler screening line by one of your officers. There were a total of seven people in front of me – three couples and one single female. It took over 20 minutes for the agent to confirm all eight of our boarding passes and check our IDs (as I was running late I was keeping track of the time). It took another 30 minutes to even get to the x-ray device.

I noticed, as I stood there waiting, that the screener was arguing with the passengers about the amount of hand gel that the container had (3.5 ounces and not the allowed 3 ounces) and that she could not allow these items on the plane. This agent also x-rayed the same baby stroller 4 times. The screener operating the x-ray device was opening traveler’s bags and “hunting” for contraband or unauthorized objects prior to the bags going through the x-ray. I was finally given the opportunity to place my coat, shoes, and laptop (out of the bag) on the belt and away they went. I went through the metal detector, picked up my belongings and was late for my flight – thank you.

Once at the hotel I went to retrieve my tools out of the checked baggage, but to my surprise found that they were still in my laptop bag (the same one that was x-rayed and screened). I wish to list the contents of my tool kit so you can see why I’m extremely frustrated with your department: small handheld electric drill with power cable, three exacto knives with spare blades, screwdrivers of various sizes, wrenches, extendable magnetic poles, twist ties, pliers, wire cutters, and a few other items. 

I truly do apologize for failing to properly pack, but I also see a serious problem here: the fact that your attention has been diverted to hunting for suspicious activity and items while you allow real weapons on a plane. I never agreed with the implementation of TSA or agents as it is reminiscent of Germany in the 1940s, but at one time they did give me a small feeling that I may be a little more secure in my travels which is no longer there. 

– James

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

extremecentrist April 12, 2010 at 9:41 am

Wow. If you can actually prove this somehow, you go to CNN, CBS, NBC, etc.


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