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Discussion in 'Travel' started by Kristina Cay, Apr 21, 2016.
My point was the inconsistency.
Brings back a memory of the early days of TSA and the infamous 'secondary screening' that some of us had to deal with at the entrance to the jetway. Often triggered by a profile tag (flying one way; last minute reservation; paid by cash; or just a random pick so no one would moan and groan about 'discriminatory profiling') .
At any rate, at an airport in California, just ahead of me was a party of three. Young mother, young father, infant in stroller. One of the three selected for secondary screening. Take a guess. Wait for it. Wait for it. Yup. Infant in the stroller. Guess they thought maybe parents had filled the tubes with something... By itself maybe not so unreasonable to cause secondary screening. Were either of the putative parents' carry on bags checked? NOPE. TSA just going through the motions because this one was triggered by a random number check protocol.
I know. I checked. The screeners knew who I was -- I was on the team that was implementing roll out of TSA; all the screeners knew us and loved to make sure WE got secondary screening also! Which was guaranteed, because we ONLY flew on one way tickets arranged last minute!
Moshe ben David
Jobsworths, the lot of them
I had the privilege of watching and waiting for several TSA agents scanning the luggage of triplets trying to determine if the 3 identical stuffed animals were safe for carry on. The mother attempted to explain the material in the stuffed animal but the TSA agents ignored her. Eventually the agents moved the luggage to a secondary station to x ray and finally opened one piece of luggage to determine the 1 stuffed animal was stuffed with beads. Then the secondary x ray of the 2nd piece of luggage. At that point my carry had been cleared.
My point is the consistency. They are doing their job; following the same set of protocols "day-in," "day-out."
Unless things have recently changed, lighters are prohibited by TSA.
Have to disagree with you. Given that TSA itself states that all decisions are at the discretion of each individual TSA staff member 'on the line' so to speak, I fail to see any rational way in which TSA can be credited with any semblance of consistency. Having experienced location to location variances myself I'm totally convinced there is no effort at consistency. Further when we see fairly regular reports of tests of the system by undercover secret passengers, which result in marked fails at multiple airports, consistency simply is not there.
TSA at least at passenger screening amounts to political theater, not substantial security.
Moshe ben David
Assuming the TSA is anything like the Europeon equivalent (UK, France and Spain at least), lighters are usually banned but sometimes okay. I've flown with a lighter in my pocket probably 10 times at least ansd had it confiscated maybe 3?
It's just like any enforcement agency. The administration establishes a SOP & work instruction for a large a workforce. Each location interprets the procedures. The variability depends entirely on the totality of each location and circumstance. For such a large workforce, it works quite well. I'll stop here since I would be divulging restricted information.
I think the term that best covers it is security theater (" practice of investing in countermeasures intended to provide the feeling of improved security while doing little or nothing to actually achieve it." Wikipedia) which I believe was coined by Bruce Schneier.
It is analagous to attempting to "inspect in" quality in a manufacturing context by applying a 100% inspection regime (they are trying to "inspect out" any contraband travelers may be carrying). Many years of experience have demonstrated the limitations of the 100% inspection approach and it is not the first choice of any manufacturing facility planning to stay in business. But of course most factories don't have a captive market enforced by the govt. unlike the TSA...
To make this more than just a rant: 1) I have carried a LM Style PS onboard the plane in NA and EU many times, never been confiscated, 2) same with a Bic lighter. (I have had to explain their own rules to them on a few occasions to achieve this though.)
Fabulous! Your are doing your part. The program is indeed working.
Since you have made the analogy to manufacturing, think of yourself as the consumer of the final product. The inspection of the final product can be made at the 100% level in the product's quiescent, non-application circumstance and it can be fault-free in that environment; however, when it gets into the hands of the consumer is where the pitfalls surface.
It is when the consumer becomes aware of those shortcomings AND notifies the maker that the final product can be made better to address those deficiencies.
Have you notified your elected official?
Consistency would lead to the same items being examined every time; despite packing the same things, the same way, in the same bag six times in the last eight weeks different things catch their attention each time.
Yes, it would.... lead to that.
One thing I picked up flying over the Holiday, don't wear heavy pants or cargo pants. The full body scanners (the ones that don't work -) don't like them.
Since I wear Duluth Trading cargo pants when I fly, that could explain why I always get a pat down. Flying back I had TSA Pre-Check and Dockers on, no problem.
the cargo pants thing might explain why i always set off the scanners for a nice pat down
well, these days it's the metal in my chest but it probably used to be the cargo pants
My Blocklite 9V flashlight almost always gets lots of attention. I'm not sure why, buy my explanations and demonstrations have probably resulted in some sales. I should work commission. They used to get excited about my granola bars, but I'm not sure whether that is still the case. Maybe they are better fed now.
They are. The prefer to feed on frequent-flyer hemoglobin.
I travel for my job every week domestically and carry this through security each week. Never had an issue. Periodically they will ask to see something, but once they see it they let it go.
All this is 100% TSA approved.
I fly Pre
I fly Pre-Check (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED) with many of the same items including zip ties and have never had my bag opened up. I also have carried a Anti-Gravity car booster kit many times without a blink of the eye. Screwdrivers/Wrenches/Pliers under 7" in length are approved and I've traveled with entire tool kits that meet that criteria. Have a printout of the TSA page right in the bag so there is no question. I literally have NEVER (15+ years) put my liquids in a plastic pouch for inspection (all in a toiletry bag inside my pack-shaving cream, small toothpaste, mouthwash, hand lotion, sanitizer, etc.) and have NEVER been pulled out of line for it...EVER. What a scam that is. But they did take the 1½" Victorinox I left on my keychain!