Flew from Lincoln to San Francisco today through St. Louis on American airlines.
In Lincoln - we all had to take our shoes off and they had to go through the regular xray screeners. Also the security wand they used in LNK was far more sensitive then what they used in St. Louis. My jean buttons set off the wand in Lincoln.
On a weird side note - there was a family of 6 where the father who is a professor at the American University of Egypt at Cairo who was supposed to be on my flight. They had 12 huge crates of items (they were returning after 6 months of being in the US). Well - they were randomly selected by the computer to have everything hand searched. They opened up every crate and searched it thoroughly. They expected it to last more then 4 hours and the family didn't make their original flight - they showed up 2 hours early.
Also - after my connecting flight - I asked the people around me about the shoe thing. At Dulles and National - people did not have to remove their shoes.
I find it strange that the airports are very inconsistent in their security. The flight attendent said that she heard the smaller airports are doing a better job - but who knows.
Surprisingly - the professor and his family were white and looked "average". He was American - it just happened that they spent 6 months in the states and was returning to Cairo for 2 years to teach. These kids looked as innocent as kids could possilby look.
I felt so sorry because the wife had packed everything so carefully and these national guard people were not able to put things back so ofcourse there were "extras" that did not go back into the crates. I assume they became "carryone items."
I think they were picked because of their flight to Cairo - not sure.
If I understood the news correctly, the Feds will absorb the same workers who did such a poor job prior to 911. The standards will be no higher if Congress has its way. No HS diploma required. I certainly hope the Feds do a better background check than the Security Companies did. Security personnel are in desperate need of a shake up.......higher standards and higher pay would result in better security. I don't mind being searched....I welcome it One prob I have with security checks is the following. On our return thru San Juan, Deb's eye brow pluckers under-went inspection by 3 different security personnel...it was almost comical in that each opened and closed them repeatly..rubbed edges to test sharpness....finally we said "hey just keep them PLEASE" lol.....What was scary about that is that security is so picky about carry on items but as I understand......checked baggage still is'nt being scanned at all except on International flights (that was being done prior to 911). One of the changes since 911 is that all baggage checked would be scanned....is'nt in effect yet.
What is so sad is that all this inconvience they are putting people through will not stop the determined terrorist, just the unfortunate dummie! As I have metal implants I never make it through without being searched, but the searches are pathetic to say the least. There are many ways of getting things by security, none of which I will explain, but believe this, a terrorist knows these ways just as well if not better than I as a former police officer do. There are ways of checking what's truely important without all this foolish ranting over nailclippers and public searching of Mr & Mrs John Q. Normals handbags!
Exactly right.....no security system will ever completely defeat an individual willing to die in order to destroy others. However, a well trained professional security force will cut the odds that someone can slip through. It appears that isnt going to happen......given the current plan being considered on the Hill. Unless something bad happens in the near future.....security will slowly slip back into its incompetent state that existed prior to 911. Actually, security has not evolved far ahead of that incompetent state that existed prior to 911.
Oh please! Tortured! Get off it. I was held up a big half hour in Newark to have my luggage x-rayed. Gee, I survived that "torture". Then at the gate I was pulled out for a hand luggage search and a pat down. Golly, I survived that "torment" too. On another flight in Key West, my boyfriend had to unbuckle his belt. We are still trying to figure that out. In Tampa he had his razor confiscated, but I got through with a Swiss Army knife in my purse. Yes it is inconsistant, but damn, they are trying. So it is up to the passengers to be a lot more vigilant until the airlines and the government get their act together. If you are going to whine and complain, then don't fly. You know there are no guarantees in life. Relating your "hardships" on this website do nothing. If you are so concerned, contact your congressman, senators and governor; and don't let up until you are satisfied that all that can be done has been done.
Swiss army knife? Now why would you carry that aboard a plane given the high security? You did'nt know it was illegal aboard a plane? Yea Right!!! Why don't you do your part by not doing such a blatantly stupid thing in the future. That little stunt could have caused your plane to be diverted and landed somewhere other than its destination due to your mindless violation. Before you admonish others for what you call "whining", you should really consider what would have happened if your purse was opened as a flight attendant walked by and he/she saw your knife. IMO ..admitting to carrying a knife aboard a plane completely discredits any feeble point you were trying to make in your post. Airports have been evacuated for less violations! I had better stop before I violate the rules of this wonderful board because the words I want to address to you would definitely violate the rules. What a totally STUPID thing to do!!! I wish you had been caught and prosecuted!
Flight attendants are now being trained in how to break a wine bottle to create a weapon. As research for a story I was working, I put a bottle of wine in my tote bag. My goal was to see whether or not I could carry it onto the ship and I didn't think about the airplane side of it. No problem with airport security.
Embroidery scissors? Serious bad. Menopausal women have been known to be hostile, but I really can't see a lot of middle-aged ladies hijacking a plane with scissors and bargello needles.
I am always detained at Heathrow because my name happens to be the same as one of the highly-placed operatives of the IRA. It's an annoyance, but it makes more sense, security-wise, than random rifling through baggage.
pamda -- CM First-Time Cruisers Editor and Body-Search Survivor
IMO the mindset has to change. We can't continue to hire cashiers to do the job of a bodyguard. Kuki's on the right track. Airport personnel handling security need to be just as street smart and capable as our police officers. We need Sky Bouncers - not McDonald's rejects.