Tuesday, May 11, 2010

3-1-1 Liquid Policy Still In Place

3-1-1 BaggieA recent article is leading some to ask whether TSA has lifted the 3-1-1 policy on liquids, aerosols and gels. Not so. While we continue to aggressively work to find a way to relax the 3-1-1 requirements, we know liquid explosives still pose a threat to aviation security. This remains a top priority and TSA is partnering with vendors to find a solution that effectively screens liquids.

Two notable major incidents involving liquid explosives are:

1995 “Bojinka Plot” in Asia where Ramzi Yousef planned to use liquid explosives to bomb 12 passenger carrying aircraft bound for the United States. This was one month after his test on Philippine Airlines Flight 434 where a smaller “liquid” container killed one person.

The 2006 foiled liquid explosives plot in the U.K. This plot demonstrated a real threat and is the catalyst for TSA's liquids restrictions.

So please remember: 3-1-1 for carry-ons = 3.4 ounce (100ml) bottle or less (by volume) ; 1 quart-sized, clear, plastic, zip-top bag; 1 bag per passenger placed in screening bin. One-quart bag per person limits the total liquid volume each traveler can bring. 3.4 ounce (100ml) container size is a security measure.

3-1-1 Poster
Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

138 comments:

Anonymous said...

lol

just

lol

How timely.

Anonymous said...

So BB does read FT.

Anonymous said...

So what the article is really pointing out is the incompetence of TSO's in detecting potentially dangerous objects in passengers carry-on luggage.

Makes me feel safer.....

Ayn R. Key said...

Curtis, aka "Blogger Bob", is a member on FT for the sole purpose of invoking the "do not disparage our fellow members" rule. Beyond that he never posts there, and I seriously doubt he even reads there.

By the way, Curtis, I did conclusively debunk your party line about how liquid explosives pose a threat.

You have to produce one of two liquid bombs:
1. It is possible to assemble it on the terminal side of the airport, and every single separate ingredient is considered safe.
2. It is assembled in a chem lab as a liquid, and is safe to transport to the airport, and would be considered safe going through the checkpoint.

Liquid explosives require a full chem lab to produce AND are extremely volatile to transport AND are quite detectable.

Why repeat the lie? Seriously, Curtis, you've lost this one so very long ago.

Gunner said...

So, I was going through the TSA check point at the LAX international terminal. I went through the family medial line as my entire family (Mrs. Gunner) was with me, and I was carrying our combined meds for a two week trip to Asia in an insulated lunch bag.

As I approached the podium, a TSA operative asked me where my children were. I quietly responded that we didn't have children, we were a family, and we had extensive medications and the sign said family medical, not families with children medical. I was allowed to proceed.

When I got there I showed and opened the lunch bag containing our medications is six very full containers, each holding a day's pills for up to a week. You've all seen them, white, rectangular, with seven compartments and asnap-down lid. Very, very low tech. There was also a two week supply of insulin in pre-loaded injectors, a supply of disposable needles, and a blood test kit (meter, test strips and a finger poker).

The agent of the United States of America then asked if I had "documentation" for my meds.

I then produced a piece of paper on which I had affixed labels for each of the prescriptions. Said list was then studied for a few minutes and I was told I could proceed, but I needed to provide the list to the x-ray screener. I smiled, said thank you, and went on my merry way. I never provided the list to anyone else because no one else asked.

So, good and kind people:

1. Did the agent have the right to ask for my documentation on my medications?
2. Was said agent trained/qualified to examine the prescription labels, determine that they matched my meds? He never attempted to open any of the containers, so he had no idea what was in them

Gunner said...

Another topic......

While in said LAX international terminal, I noted that the shoe bins that you are not supposed to put shoes in, all had advertising.

Not sure why, but it really irritated me.

Gunner said...

Finally, while going through the scanning lines at LAX, one of the Agents of the United States fo America was speaking as loud as possible (I personally thought he was shouting at everone in line, and berating one Asian family in particular, but I have been assured that TSA agnets never shout).

The gist of his rant was: if you take empty bins from my line, you have to go through my line.

If the reason for this is not SSI, could someone enlighten me where I can find documentation on the "you taka the basked from my line youse gotta use my line" policy.

Isaac Newton said...

One more time:

If a large bottle of water or a large bottle of shampoo are potentially so dangerous that they can't be allowed on the flight, why do screeners then throw that bottle in the regular trash can with all the other potentially dangerous liquids? If it's too dangerous to fly, it needs to be treated as HazMat.

I've given up expecting you to be sensible, but at least you could try to be consistent.

Anonymous said...

Gotta love the TSA. Spending untold millions of my tax dollars to make sure I don't bring in a bottle of water, but they don't check the bottles of water, soda, etc. sold by the vendors on the other side of the checkpoint.

Tell me again how good a job you guys are doing. I need a laugh.

deadpass said...

So there have been two times when a liquid bomb was part of a terror plan against aircraft. One six years before 9/11 and one 5 years after. So in the last 15 years this has been planned twice, neither time even made it to an airport, let alone a plane. So why does this matter again?

Anonymous said...

I NEVER take out my travel toiletries and place them in a plastic baggie, and I NEVER get caught either.

Prank Call of Cthulhu said...

3-1-1...Because one six-ounce bottle of shampoo can blow up an airplane, but two three-ounce bottles can't. Also, all explosives are liquid.

Security theatre is still theatre.

Jim Harris said...

The TSA must constantly invent and perpetuate threats in order to retain funding. Kip-Hawley-Is-an-Idiot (KHIAI) bags will never go away.

...unless, of course, you're Britney Spears

Anonymous said...

Other attempts used solids. Are you going to limit all our solids on board to a single little baggie?

What about the show bomb? How about prohibiting shoes on board unless they are smaller than a size 5? Then you could end the shoe removal madness, right? And I won´t even go into the fact that you can board planes into the US from many countries without ever having to remove your shoes (and none of the exploded)...

Limiting liquids without thinking about what liquids you are limiting or allowing, then leaving a whole bunch of exceptions for medical necessities and the sort makes no sense and is a major inconvenience.

And please explain how you are "aggressively pursuing" alternatives to the liquid ban. I don´t see anything being done.

RB said...

Why repeat the lie? Seriously, Curtis, you've lost this one so very long ago.

May 11, 2010 7:21 PM
.................
If TSA and its spokespeople could only tell the truth they would have nothing to say.

Cat said...

Ayn R. Key Said...
"Liquid explosives require a full chem lab to produce AND are extremely volatile to transport AND are quite detectable."

Or, of course, you could steal or buy some of the wonderful commercial packages of binary and/or liquid explosives, which are safe enough to be handled in a mining environment and stored in similar locations.

And I guess a home meth lab counts as a "full chemistry lab", as there have been instances in which certain explosives (by-products of the meth manufacturing process) have been created.

Then, too, there is that video from the BBC that shows an explosives expert re-creating the explosive from the August 2006 liquids plot... standing next to an airplane, with exactly two substances, neither one of which is exceptionally difficult to obtain.

Seriously, it's a shame some of these things can't be tested on Mythbusters... you don't believe the TSA, but maybe you'd believe Adam and Jamie?

Anonymous said...

Saw a guy carry a full thermos through screening this morning. It got tested and rex-rayed. Was the flight any worse off for this to happen? No.

Anonymous said...

Shoes in bin, shoes out of bin. When will TSA stop failing to make even the simplest descisions standardardized? Must be intentional so they can always blame the training of the TSO for the agencies failures. Anyone want to bet as to if the guy who missed the pistols and knives in the Egypt-bound luggage gets Peter-panned to some out of the way place?

RB said...

Seriously, it's a shame some of these things can't be tested on Mythbusters... you don't believe the TSA, but maybe you'd believe Adam and Jamie?

May 12, 2010 11:23 AM

.....................
Well since we know that TSA lies I would believe Adam or Jamie much sooner than a TSA spokesperson.

Oh Bob, that offer to be screened with WBI so we could finally settle the question of just how revealing they really are is still on the table.

Just waiting on TSA to accept my offer.

I can't imagine that TSA wouldn't want to settle this once and for all.

Less Frequent Flier said...

I give you credit for covering this topic here.

Yasmine H said...

I wouldn't care so much about the policy if it wasn't for the fact that the airlines capitalize on the policy by hiking the price of water to the point of insanity.

TSORon said...

Ayn R. Key said...
By the way, Curtis, I did conclusively debunk your party line about how liquid explosives pose a threat.
-------------------------------

Sorry ayn, but your “conclusive” is far from an accurate statement. The facts of liquid explosives have been presented both here and at FT several times. I’m sorry you cant bring yourself to admit your error in this area. Do a google search and read. The facts are plain and plentiful. And a laboratory is not really needed to manufacture these components, just some time. That fact is also available via google.

So basically your entire premise concerning this topic is in error. I know that won’t deter you from making this same error over and over again, but at least someone has tried to educate you on the subject.

Anonymous said...

Quoth RB:
"Seriously, it's a shame some of these things can't be tested on Mythbusters... you don't believe the TSA, but maybe you'd believe Adam and Jamie?"

Perhaps it's because Adam and Jamie at least use fact somewhere in their experiments, and sometimes even admit when they're wrong.

When the TSA is wrong (which is almost always), some poor schmuck is kidnapped, beaten, tortured, or even killed, all in violation of the constitution.

The TSA has had only one true success, unlike private security of years prior. These are the true terrorists scaring people from flying, not Kumar and Aleksei.

Anonymous said...

There is absolutely no reason to be afraid of a specific state of matter. Liquids are not any more dangerous on airplanes than solids or gases.

While your officers are distracted apprehending shampoo, guns and ammunition still go past them undetected...

RB said...

This exchange was posted on another forum. The discussion was talking about medically exempted items.

The person (TSORon) is saying to check all you want and to use that supply to refill smaller containers is a self proclaimed TSA employee.

Beliefs like this are why TSA checkpoints need to be removed from US airports.

And another demonstration of the lack of high qualiy of TSA training.


Quote:
Blog Participant:

"What if you can't get replacements where you are going and need more than 3oz?"

TSORon:

Ship a gallon, or whatever you need, in your checked baggage. Refill the bottle in your carryon from the bottle in your checked baggage as necessary. If you need more than one 3 ounce bottle during your flight, take several.

Anonymous said...

"deadpass said...
So there have been two times when a liquid bomb was part of a terror plan against aircraft. One six years before 9/11 and one 5 years after. So in the last 15 years this has been planned twice, neither time even made it to an airport, let alone a plane. So why does this matter again?"

Philippine Airlines Flight 434

MarkVII said...

Have the Mythbusters take a look at 3-1-1? I'm all for it.

They've got more credibility with me than the DWWTFT crowd.

Ayn R. Key said...

Cat's not paying much attention.

Liquid explosives are extremely volatile. If you try to transport a pre-mixed one to the airport, and hit a pothole or speedbump, you blow up.

That's why I included "safe to transport".

That applies to the example mixed up by the BBC.

Are you suggesting that I'm denying the existence of liquid explosives? I'm not. I'm denying the existence of the Hogwarts Liquid Explosive that I described.

It has to have ALL of the characteristics of one of the two liquid explosives I describe. Either one, but it has to have ALL of that one's characteristics. Not some, not most. All. Only then does the 3-1-1 rule make any sense as a defense against liquid explosive.

Trollkiller said...

Blogger Bob, this is such a cute puppy and it is not even Friday yet. ;-)

TSOWilliamReed said...

RB said...
Seriously, it's a shame some of these things can't be tested on Mythbusters... you don't believe the TSA, but maybe you'd believe Adam and Jamie?

May 12, 2010 11:23 AM

.....................
Well since we know that TSA lies I would believe Adam or Jamie much sooner than a TSA spokesperson.

Oh Bob, that offer to be screened with WBI so we could finally settle the question of just how revealing they really are is still on the table.

Just waiting on TSA to accept my offer.

I can't imagine that TSA wouldn't want to settle this once and for all.

May 12, 2010 2:16 PM
----------------------

You say you "Know" TSA lies? Please explain with actual proof that TSA has lied to the public about anything. Bring up some instances where TSA flat out told a lie to the public and did something else on purpose. Saying its already on the blog doesn't count and policy changes due to terrorist activity or better intel does not count.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, TSA, for pointing out that the pre-DHS/TSA USA responded rationally to the 1995 plot. Even though the 1995 plot actually killed a passenger on a test run (Philippine Airlines Flight 434), we did not absurdly over-react and ban an entire state of matter.

But in 2006, after a plot involving morons who never even bought a plane ticket was disrupted, DHS/TSA had to show it was "doing something" to "make us feel safe," so they banned an entire state of matter. Interestingly enough, the threat was greater a week prior to the liquid ban than a week after, because the plotters were still on the loose. DHS/TSA knew about the plot for months but did nothing. Only *after* the threat had been eliminated did TSA put the War on Water into place, by which point the only result is the harassment and inconvenience of innocent travelers.

The War on Water is an absurd charade that continues only for the purpose of saving face within DHS/TSA and continuing to scare the sheeple into submission. Give up the lies and come clean.

Anonymous said...

Bob,

On another public forum, a person representing themselves as a TSO has stated that the TSA policy on liquid prescription and OTC medications that is on the website is incorrect and that TSO's have been given different instructions.

In part the website guidance reads:

"You are not limited in the amount or volume of these items you may bring in your carry-on baggage. BUT if the medically necessary items exceed 3 ounces or are not contained in a one-quart, zip-top plastic bag, you MUST declare to one of our Security Officers at the checkpoint for further inspection."

Can you please clarify, especially concerning quantities permitted?

Anonymous said...

So, good and kind people:

1. Did the agent have the right to ask for my documentation on my medications?
2. Was said agent trained/qualified to examine the prescription labels, determine that they matched my meds? He never attempted to open any of the containers, so he had no idea what was in them
___________________________________
I am a TSO. And it is none of our business what kind of medication you are taking. The only reason that a TSO might ever look twice at a medication is because it is a large liquid. Just looking at a glance at the bottle and seeing that it is a medical liquid is enough. We do not have to see your prescription. As for pills, you do not ever have to declare pills. Like I said before it is not our business what kind of pills you are taking. And as for insulin. Usually it is in such a small container that it is not even looked at twice.
If you have a large liquid bottle or a gel pack/ice pack cooling your meds then I would declare it. Otherwise, no TSO needs to know what kind of medicine you are carrying.

Anonymous said...

If the reason for this is not SSI, could someone enlighten me where I can find documentation on the "you taka the basked from my line youse gotta use my line" policy.
___________________________________
This is not a policy. But it is an annoyance when people carry bins from one lane to another because then the TSOs have to go to other lanes and restock their bins. No policy, just TSOs not wanting to do a little extra work.

Anonymous said...

Gotta love the TSA. Spending untold millions of my tax dollars to make sure I don't bring in a bottle of water, but they don't check the bottles of water, soda, etc. sold by the vendors on the other side of the checkpoint.
___________________________________
All vendor deliveries go through the checkpoint. Funny how you people assume things as if you actually know what is happening.

RB said...

Bob, in another blog a person claiming to be a TSA employee has stated that the information in your SOP and the information on TSA's web pages discussing Medically Exempted items disagree.

There is no way for the public to know if this is true, but if so, how can anyone traveling know how to prepare their medically needed items if the provided information is wrong?

The answer given by this supposed employee is to check medical items that exceed 100ml. With the problems of lost baggage not to mention continued theft issues of checked items this solution just doesn't work.

Are we expected to allow TSA to confiscate our medicines? That seems to be the case!

This is a serious health and welfare issue that demands immediate attention.

I would like a clear, concise statement from TSA stating that Medically Exempted items are permitted in larger sizes than 100ml and that TSA has taken the initiative to clear any misunderstanding its employees may have about people with medical needs and their medical supplies.

Anonymous said...

"What about the show bomb? How about prohibiting shoes on board unless they are smaller than a size 5? Then you could end the shoe removal madness, right? And I won´t even go into the fact that you can board planes into the US from many countries without ever having to remove your shoes (and none of the exploded)..."

Whats a "Show Bomb"?? Shoes go through the X-ray, do they not? Does your father happen to be your uncle also?

----------------------

Saw a guy carry a full thermos through screening this morning. It got tested and rex-rayed. Was the flight any worse off for this to happen? No.

KEY PHRASE - "It got tested and rex-rayed."

Point of your post?

Colyn said...

Howdy Folx!

The liquids rule remains in place with good cause. While it's easy to look back and think "that was so long ago" and assume it wont happen again, it's still dangerous. See, the enemy doesn't think the same way, they look back and say "it worked" and will not hesitate to use the same strategy again if the opportunity presents itself.

If another country wants to succumb to the jesters and ignorant, that's their business. I for one am glad the TSA stands behind the liquids policy.

Safe travels everyone!! *wave*

Colyn

RB said...

You say you "Know" TSA lies? Please explain with actual proof that TSA has lied to the public about anything. Bring up some instances where TSA flat out told a lie to the public and did something else on purpose. Saying its already on the blog doesn't count and policy changes due to terrorist activity or better intel does not count.

May 13, 2010 12:10 PM

...........
WBI machines have no network capability.

WBI machines cannot store images.

for starters.

It also seems we have been lied to about medically exempted liquids based on a recent exchange on another blog.

Anonymous said...

Saw a guy carry a full thermos through screening this morning. It got tested and rex-rayed. Was the flight any worse off for this to happen? No.

KEY PHRASE - "It got tested and rex-rayed."

Point of your post?
__________________________

The ban doesn't apparently get enforced at all TSA checkpoints.

Gunner said...

A TSA Agent, posting as Anonymous said:

Saw a guy carry a full thermos through screening this morning. It got tested and rex-rayed. Was the flight any worse off for this to happen? No.

KEY PHRASE - "It got tested and rex-rayed."

Point of your post?
-------------------

The point of the post -- even though it was not mine -- was simple. A thermous full of liquid passed security.

Does this mean it is not TSA policy that we can empty our bottled water into a thermous, it can now pass security -- that the inherint risk was not the liquid, but rather the dreaded plastic bottle.

Wow, TSA as Earth First!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Gotta love the TSA. Spending untold millions of my tax dollars to make sure I don't bring in a bottle of water, but they don't check the bottles of water, soda, etc. sold by the vendors on the other side of the checkpoint.
___________________________________
All vendor deliveries go through the checkpoint. Funny how you people assume things as if you actually know what is happening.


-----------------------------

Really? All vendor deliveries go thru the checkpoint? Wow. What do they check exactly? How are the liquids checked for explosives or tampering?

And if all vendor liquids ar checked for explosives why is it my bottle of water isn't?

Funny how some people assume that an entire pallet of sodas being waved thru the checkpoint without any testing does anything for security.

Anonymous said...

TSOWilliamReed said...

You say you "Know" TSA lies? Please explain with actual proof that TSA has lied to the public about anything. Bring up some instances where TSA flat out told a lie to the public and did something else on purpose. Saying its already on the blog doesn't count and policy changes due to terrorist activity or better intel does not count.

---------------------------

TSA has claimed that the strip search cannot store images. This lie was discovered when TSA finally admitted that the machines can do just that.

They've also claimed that the images aren't good enough to show anyone's privates, although they have failed to support this with actual pictures of exactly what the operator sees. This lie was busted when a TSA employee assaulted another employee for making fun of his small package after he went thru the machine in training.

And the no-fly list not having any children's names on it even though children have been harassed for years when their names were found on the list.

Care to try again William?

Anonymous said...

Dear RB:

"the information in your SOP and the information on TSA's web pages discussing Medically Exempted items disagree."

Please stop misquoting that poor FT poster, thats not what he said.

LTSO with Answers said...

Another topic......

While in said LAX international terminal, I noted that the shoe bins that you are not supposed to put shoes in, all had advertising.

Not sure why, but it really irritated me.


I don't know why this is at some airports but LAX is not the only airport. I have seen advertisements in bins when flying through SEA myself.

LTSO with Answers said...

Gunner said...

Finally, while going through the scanning lines at LAX, one of the Agents of the United States fo America was speaking as loud as possible (I personally thought he was shouting at everone in line, and berating one Asian family in particular, but I have been assured that TSA agnets never shout).

The gist of his rant was: if you take empty bins from my line, you have to go through my line.

If the reason for this is not SSI, could someone enlighten me where I can find documentation on the "you taka the basked from my line youse gotta use my line" policy.


Please know that most of what I read on this blog is not policy issues but more of the person in the uniform. Just because something is different from one airport to the next doesn't mean they are making up rules and changing policy sometimes it means that there is a person in that uniform. That is diversity for you. Every officer will have their quirks because it is human nature.

LTSO with Answers said...

Isaac Newton said...

One more time:

If a large bottle of water or a large bottle of shampoo are potentially so dangerous that they can't be allowed on the flight, why do screeners then throw that bottle in the regular trash can with all the other potentially dangerous liquids? If it's too dangerous to fly, it needs to be treated as HazMat.

I've given up expecting you to be sensible, but at least you could try to be consistent.


Lighter fluid can be dangerous but when sitting by itself it is pretty much just there.

There are pieces that are needed to set off an explosive and without all the pieces then the explosive is pretty much just there.

It is not that water and shampoos are too dangerous to fly. It is the fact that liquid explosives can be easily disguised as such and have similar properties as common liquids we use in our everyday lives. Yes common liquids can be used to create explosives but officers are not specifically trained in all possible combinations. To differentiate between that many liquids consistently is a risk.

Hope this helps. Tried to explain this as simply as possible.

LTSO with Answers said...

And please explain how you are "aggressively pursuing" alternatives to the liquid ban. I don´t see anything being done.

It has been said in the past that when all new X-rays are deployed with the software needed then the x-ray machines will determine which are harmless liquids or potentially harmful. Procedures will probably be in place to have threat liquids further screened. We don't know yet because it hasn't happened.

LTSO with Answers said...

Ayn R. Key said...

Liquid explosives are extremely volatile. If you try to transport a pre-mixed one to the airport, and hit a pothole or speedbump, you blow up.


Ayn.. Please note that Ramsy Yousef succeeded to carry NG explosive which was liquid onto an airplane without it being set off. Yes most are volatile but that doesn't make it impossible. We have seen the success in the past. History repeating itself is bad. We need to learn from mistakes not welcome the same horror.

LTSO with Answers said...

RB said...

I would like a clear, concise statement from TSA stating that Medically Exempted items are permitted in larger sizes than 100ml and that TSA has taken the initiative to clear any misunderstanding its employees may have about people with medical needs and their medical supplies.



Medical liquids exceeded 100mL can be cleared and permitted past security checkpoints for carry-on.

For the second part maybe Bob can issue something for a nation wide brief to remind officers of this. Recurrent training is always neccessary. It is a lot of stuff to know.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous wrote:

All vendor deliveries go through the checkpoint. Funny how you people assume things as if you actually know what is happening.


Uh huh. Thanks for pointing that out. Vendor deliveries go through the exact same x-ray that TSA claims is not adequate to clear our private water bottles, soda bottles, wine bottles, etc. I watched a few pallets go through behind me at SMF this week. I would have taken pictures but didn't want to take the time to deal with the likely threats of arrest.

As TSA claims, the standard (70s style) x-ray does not detect explosives, whether they be in the pallets a vendor puts through or in my carryon. But yet TSA considers those x-rays adequate screening for pallets upon pallets of bottles that receive no additional scrutiny. Yet I'm not allowed to bring a bottle of water, so that TSA can claim it is "doing something" to make us "feel safer" "out of an abundance of caution." :(

TSM/West said...

Gunner said
Another topic......

While in said LAX international terminal, I noted that the shoe bins that you are not supposed to put shoes in, all had advertising.

Not sure why, but it really irritated me.
-----------------------------------
Why would that irritate you? A private company supplies the bins at no cost to the tax payer.

May 11, 2010 7:47 PM

TSM/West said...

Issac Newton said
One more time:

If a large bottle of water or a large bottle of shampoo are potentially so dangerous that they can't be allowed on the flight, why do screeners then throw that bottle in the regular trash can with all the other potentially dangerous liquids? If it's too dangerous to fly, it needs to be treated as HazMat.

I've given up expecting you to be sensible, but at least you could try to be consistent.

May 11, 2010 9:14 PM
-----------------------------------
One more time for you. We have ways of testing liquids. In order to do that we would have to test every liquid over 3.4 ozs. Multiply that by all of the passengers that come through checkpoint screening areas and figure what the wait time would be. Everyone would have to come to the airport at least 4 hours ahead of the scheduled departure just to get through screening. You already complain about the lines now.

Karl said...

Blogger Bob,

What I'm guessing is happening is that the TSA is gradually rolling out the x-ray upgrades that can differentiate potential threats from benign liquids, but they're not installed everywhere. To keep things consistent (which people seem to complain about a LOT) and flowing smoothly everywhere, 3-1-1 is the official rule until all checkpoints have been updated. But, if liquids that violate the 3-1-1 rule go through an upgraded checkpoint, there's really no reason to waste the passenger's or TSA's time by unnecessarily removing the liquids.

I think if the TSA acknowledged this, people would be a lot more understanding.

Anonymous said...

Colyn spewed:

The liquids rule remains in place with good cause. While it's easy to look back and think "that was so long ago" and assume it wont happen again, it's still dangerous. See, the enemy doesn't think the same way, they look back and say "it worked" and will not hesitate to use the same strategy again if the opportunity presents itself.

If another country wants to succumb to the jesters and ignorant, that's their business. I for one am glad the TSA stands behind the liquids policy.
__________________________

The liquids policy makes sense? Why are aircrews allowed to take as much liquids as they want to through the checkpoint? Why aren't 100% of the people on the sterile side screened?

When you begin having different standards for different categories of people you open yourselves to having only partial security. The liquids policy was only put into place because the UK had some issues. If you care to do some research you will find the liquids policy yet another failed TSA plan.

Anonymous said...

TSORON: "Um, Sorry ayn, but your “conclusive” is far from an accurate statement. The facts of liquid explosives have been presented both here and at FT several times. I’m sorry you cant bring yourself to admit your error in this area. Do a google search and read. The facts are plain and plentiful. And a laboratory is not really needed to manufacture these components, just some time. That fact is also available via google."

Um, http://www.rawstory.com/news/2006/Sources_August_Terror_Plot_Fiction_Underscoring_0918.html
"The liquids would need to be carefully distilled at freezing temperatures to extract the required chemicals, which are very difficult to obtain in the purities needed."

Once the fluids have been extracted, the process of mixing them produces significant amounts of heat and vile fumes. "The resulting liquid then needs some hours at room temperature for the white crystals that are the explosive to develop." The whole process, which can take between 12 and 36 hours, is "very dangerous, even in a lab, and can lead to premature detonation," said Lt. Col. Wylde.

If there was a conspiracy, he added, "it did not involve manufacturing the explosives in the loo," as this simply "could not have worked." "


SO... yeah.

Anonymous said...

TSOWilliamReed:
"You say you "Know" TSA lies? Please explain with actual proof that TSA has lied to the public about anything."

Um, how about when they say that "Advanced imaging technology cannot store, print, transmit or save the image.", but have examples of a stored, saved, and transmitted image?

If it "cannot" store images, how do they get the examples?

Anonymous said...

"Whats a "Show Bomb"??"

A typo for "shoe bomb", obviously.

TSOWilliamReed said...

RB said...
Bob, in another blog a person claiming to be a TSA employee has stated that the information in your SOP and the information on TSA's web pages discussing Medically Exempted items disagree.

There is no way for the public to know if this is true, but if so, how can anyone traveling know how to prepare their medically needed items if the provided information is wrong?

The answer given by this supposed employee is to check medical items that exceed 100ml. With the problems of lost baggage not to mention continued theft issues of checked items this solution just doesn't work.

Are we expected to allow TSA to confiscate our medicines? That seems to be the case!

This is a serious health and welfare issue that demands immediate attention.

I would like a clear, concise statement from TSA stating that Medically Exempted items are permitted in larger sizes than 100ml and that TSA has taken the initiative to clear any misunderstanding its employees may have about people with medical needs and their medical supplies.

May 14, 2010 9:14 AM
-----------------------

I don't know who that guy thinks he is but he is 100% wrong. What it states on the TSA.gov website is correct and our SOP doesn't say anything differently. Medical LGA is exempt from the restriction in reasonable amounts but it still needs to be place outside of your bag separately before being x-rayed. Also items larger than 3.4oz may have to be tested but should still be allowed through.

TSOWilliamReed said...

Mythbuster testing of explosive liquids? I think its a good idea since most of the traveling public would believe them over TSA. But how about this guy, Sidney Alford. He doesn't have his own tv show but he tested the liquid explosives and powdered explosives used in previous attacks. Follow these links below to watch and read.

Liquid Explosives: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/7536167.stm

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2009/sep/07/plane-bomb-plot-drink-bottle

Powdered explosives: http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/world/2009/12/28/robertson.uk.bomber.petn.cnn?iref=videosearch

Anonymous said...

TSOWilliamReed - Here is one quick example of where TSA has lied regarding the resolution of example scanner images:

January 27, 2010 5:53 PM

TSOWilliamReed Said...

Bob has said it before so I will say it again. YES they are the same size and resolution.

February 3, 2010 1:22 PM

Bob Said...

You guys are killing me (and others) with this. These pictures were provided to TSA by the vendor. I have never claimed they are the exact size and resolution that our officers see.

Sandra said...

WilliamReed, Sidney Alford is a consultant PAID by the British government. Do you think he is going to reach any conclusion that the government does not want him to reach?

RB said...

LTSO with Answers said...
RB said...

I would like a clear, concise statement from TSA stating that Medically Exempted items are permitted in larger sizes than 100ml and that TSA has taken the initiative to clear any misunderstanding its employees may have about people with medical needs and their medical supplies.


Medical liquids exceeded 100mL can be cleared and permitted past security checkpoints for carry-on.

For the second part maybe Bob can issue something for a nation wide brief to remind officers of this. Recurrent training is always neccessary. It is a lot of stuff to know.

May 14, 2010 9:48 PM
..............................

Is your statement meant to be considered an official statement from TSA in regards to Medically Exempted items?

"Can be cleared" the question is will it be cleared?

What training qualifies a TSA employee to determine how much of a medically needed item is reasonable? Is there an MD at every checkpoint? One on call to consult with or does the employee get to make these medical decisions?

Surely TSA is intelligent enough to understand that many people are afraid to check baggage containing anything important to them. Theft, missed connections, weather delays, abusive baggage fees by the airlines and other reason make this so.

A medically needed item could well be life critical to a person and I truly doubt that the average TSA employee has the skills to make a determination of how much is reasonable. TSA would not know what the persons travel itinerary is and surely cannot know in advance what delays a person may encounter.

I suggest if a person declares an item as a medically needed item TSA's responsibility is to either clear the item as safe or not clear the item because it is not safe.

Doing anything other than determining the safety of the item exceeds TSA's mandate to inspect for WEI, seems in violation of TSA's published information for Medically Exempted items and I would suggest opens the TSA employee to possible legal challenges.

It's a sad situation when self claimed TSA employees are spewing what seems to be inaccurate information about the screening process in the blogosphere.

TSA has enough PR problems already without getting additional unsolicted help from your staff.

RB said...

Anonymous said...
Dear RB:

"the information in your SOP and the information on TSA's web pages discussing Medically Exempted items disagree."

Please stop misquoting that poor FT poster, thats not what he said.

May 14, 2010 8:50 PM
...............................

"Yes, that’s what the TSA web site says. Are you of the opinion that it is also what the SOP says?"

"but I am responsible for following the directives of the SOP. And there is a significant difference between the two"
.................................
Above I posted two parts of the original discussion from the other blog.

dif·fer·ence   /ˈdɪfərəns, ˈdɪfrəns/ Show Spelled [dif-er-uhns, dif-ruhns] Show IPA noun, verb,-enced, -enc·ing.
–noun
1.the state or relation of being different; dissimilarity: There is a great difference between the two.
2.an instance or point of unlikeness or dissimilarity: What accounts for the differences in their behavior?
3.a significant change in or effect on a situation: His tact makes a difference in the way people accept his suggestions.
4.a distinguishing characteristic; distinctive quality, feature, etc.: The difference in the two products is quality.
5.the degree to which one person or thing differs from another.
6.the act of distinguishing; discrimination; distinction.
7.a disagreement in opinion.
8.a dispute or quarrel.
9.Also called finite distance. Mathematics.
a.the amount by which one quantity is greater or less than another.
b.relative complement.
c.(of a function f) an expression of the form f(x + h) − f(x).
10.a differentia.



I truly do not see that I mischaracterized anything stated.

Tell me what I got wrong.

GSOLTSO said...

Anon sez - "When the TSA is wrong (which is almost always), some poor schmuck is kidnapped, beaten, tortured, or even killed, all in violation of the constitution"

Wow, just wow.... I had a really snarky comeback for this one, but I am just too astonished at how scary this comment is. I will ask you to include links to the kidnappings, beatings, torture, and the killing of passengers by TSA. I will completely discount the case of the MIA TSO beating a coworker, so don't use that one - show me where your claims have a kernel of truth.

West
TSA Blog Team

avxo said...

Anonymous, answering RB about liquid explosives wrote: "The whole process, which can take between 12 and 36 hours, is "very dangerous, even in a lab, and can lead to premature detonation," said Lt. Col. Wylde."

I think that TSA's ban on liquids and the 3-1-1 policy to be silly in general and for a number of reasons.

With that said, the above quoted statement only serves to underscore that even a botched attempt at mixing the liquid components of an explosive on-board could, potentially, result in an explosion. And the bottom line is that you don't want an explosion on a plane at 35,000 feet.

So, it is too bad that TSA isn't really interested in developing a common sense approach to securing airplanes, but instead focuses on requiring the "surrender" of water, apple-juice and mouth-wash only to dispose of them with complete disregard for the potential danger that they pose.

Ayn R. Key said...

TSO Ron babbled...
Sorry ayn, but your “conclusive” is far from an accurate statement. The facts of liquid explosives have been presented both here and at FT several times.

You know, Ron, if I had doubted the mere existence of liquid bombs, you might have had a point. I didn't, so you don't.

I doubt two very extremely specific liquid bombs, and a laboratory IS necessary to manufacture these bombs.

The TSA does not need to produce scientific evidence of both of these liquid bombs, only one of them.

1. The individual components are all considered individually safe from chemical detection, and it is possible to mix them given the limited facilities on the safe side of the TSA screening.
2. The combined pre-mixed explosive is safe to transport, and is safe from chemical detection.

Neither of those bombs exist.

Other liquid bombs exist. Neither of those exist. Other liquid bombs do exist. I admit that liquid bombs exist, so you cannot say I deny the existance of liquid bombs. You will say I deny it anyway.

So basically your entire premise concerning this topic is in error. I know that won’t deter you from making this same error over and over again, but at least someone has tried to educate you on the subject.

LTSO without Answers said...
Please note that Ramsy Yousef succeeded to carry NG explosive which was liquid onto an airplane without it being set off. Yes most are volatile but that doesn't make it impossible.

Nitroglycerin is very very very detectable.

Andrew said...

The letter I sent through TSA.gov's "Got Feedback" page is too long to post here, but please take a moment and read it on my blog ( http://www.project-insomnia.com/wp/?p=1352 ). It concerns an incident we experienced at TSA's SJC Terminal A checkpoint last Friday evening.

I will post any follow-up or reply I may receive there as well.

Anonymous said...

avxo said...
the above quoted statement only serves to underscore that even a botched attempt at mixing the liquid components of an explosive on-board could, potentially, result in an explosion. And the bottom line is that you don't want an explosion on a plane at 35,000 feet.


Well, said 'explosion' would only happen with a tiny fraction of the total explosive power they were aiming at for the finished device, at best. It would probably be enough to kill the mixer and damage the bathroom. But probably not enough to blow a hole to the outside of the plane or kill anyone else.

"The process would be quickly and easily detected. The fumes of the chemicals in the toilet "would be smelt by anybody in the area." They would also inevitably "cause the alarms in the toilet and in the air change system in the aircraft to be triggered."

"this would injure the would-be suicide bomber but not endanger the aircraft, thus defeating the object "

Anonymous said...

Andrew said...
The letter I sent through TSA.gov's "Got Feedback" page is too long to post here, but please take a moment and read it on my blog ( http://www.project-insomnia.com/wp/?p=1352 ). It concerns an incident we experienced at TSA's SJC Terminal A checkpoint last Friday evening.

I will post any follow-up or reply I may receive there as well.

May 17, 2010 6:32 PM
..........................
Nice letter, clearly stating the problem and what resolution you desire.

I would also consider filing complaints with the California State Medical Board naming those TSA employees who seem to be practicing medicine.

TSOWilliamReed said...

Gunner said...
A TSA Agent, posting as Anonymous said:

Saw a guy carry a full thermos through screening this morning. It got tested and rex-rayed. Was the flight any worse off for this to happen? No.

KEY PHRASE - "It got tested and rex-rayed."

Point of your post?
-------------------

The point of the post -- even though it was not mine -- was simple. A thermous full of liquid passed security.

Does this mean it is not TSA policy that we can empty our bottled water into a thermous, it can now pass security -- that the inherint risk was not the liquid, but rather the dreaded plastic bottle.

Wow, TSA as Earth First!

May 14, 2010 6:15 PM
--------------

Perhaps the policy is that medically exempt liquids are allowed no matter the container, like it says on the website. If the passenger was diabetic and there thermos was full of orange juice they needed for the flight or something then its allowed, after being tested. Do you know if that thermos was filled with a liquid that wasn't medically necesarry for the passenger?

TSOWilliamReed said...

Anonymous said...
TSOWilliamReed:
"You say you "Know" TSA lies? Please explain with actual proof that TSA has lied to the public about anything."

Um, how about when they say that "Advanced imaging technology cannot store, print, transmit or save the image.", but have examples of a stored, saved, and transmitted image?

If it "cannot" store images, how do they get the examples?

May 15, 2010 9:46 AM

---------------

From the manufacturer of the machines.

And TSA has stated that the training machines can save images but this function is disabled at the checkpoints and no one that works that the airport has the ability to reactivate that feature.

Anonymous said...

Andrew,
In response to your letter:
I am not sure what clear care is. I am guessing that it is contact solution. Contact solution is allowed to go. And yes there is something in contact solution that does cause our FIDO to alarm. Fido is a machine that sniffs out an explosive. This is why there is more than one way to test for an explosive. The other test that is readily available (or should be) at all checkpoints would show that your contact solution is okay to pass through the checkpoint.
It sounds to me like the supervisor in this situation is not very professinal. And perhaps after this complaint they will teach this supervisor some customer service. Because it sounds to me like she was sick that day.
You stated, "It was very clear that this additional screening, which occured well after we had passed through the checkpoint and regained our carry-ons and other possessions was in retaliation for questioning her and requesting to talk to her manager". This is not true. When there is any sort of alarm on a liquid or a bag the person that the property belongs to must go through additional screening. Which is usually a pat down and some screeing of other accesible property. So sorry, that was not done in retaliation.
You also stated, "A few minutes later, the manager (not in uniform) arrived". Management does not wear a uniform. Their uniform is a dress shirt and tie.
And thats all I have to say about that. Hope it helps!

TSOWilliamReed said...

Sandra said...
WilliamReed, Sidney Alford is a consultant PAID by the British government. Do you think he is going to reach any conclusion that the government does not want him to reach?

May 16, 2010 9:38 AM

-------------

Yet I believe his research was used in the court cases against the terrorists, which is why CNN keeps consulting him.

TSOWilliamReed said...

TSOWilliamReed said...
Sandra said...
WilliamReed, Sidney Alford is a consultant PAID by the British government. Do you think he is going to reach any conclusion that the government does not want him to reach?

May 16, 2010 9:38 AM

-------------

Yet I believe his research was used in the court cases against the terrorists, which is why CNN keeps consulting him.

May 18, 2010 1:47 PM
----------------------

And here once again are his videos!


Liquid Explosives: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/7536167.stm

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2009/sep/07/plane-bomb-plot-drink-bottle

Powdered explosives: http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/world/2009/12/28/robertson.uk.bomber.petn.cnn?iref=videosearch

May 15, 2010 11:55 AM

Earl Pitts said...

@TSOWilliamReed: "Yet I believe his research was used in the court cases against the terrorists, which is why CNN keeps consulting him."

You mean the ones that were all acquitted of terrorism and only one was actually convicted of attempted murder? You mean THAT Dr. Alford?

Earl

Andrew said...

Anonymous said...
I would also consider filing complaints with the California State Medical Board naming those TSA employees who seem to be practicing medicine.

May 18, 2010 11:10 AM


Thanks. The TSA employees weren't questioning my assertion that the contact lens solution was medically-necessary, they were just refusing (for unstated reasons) to allow me to bring it through the checkpoint.

Andrew said...

Anonymous said...
Andrew,
In response to your letter:
I am not sure what clear care is. I am guessing that it is contact solution. Contact solution is allowed to go. And yes there is something in contact solution that does cause our FIDO to alarm. Fido is a machine that sniffs out an explosive. This is why there is more than one way to test for an explosive. The other test that is readily available (or should be) at all checkpoints would show that your contact solution is okay to pass through the checkpoint.


Clear Care is a contact lens solution. There was no alternate test offered. There was no admission that the machine might possibly have alarmed falsely. Do you happen to know if that alternate test is available at the SJC Terminal A checkpoint?

You stated, "It was very clear that this additional screening, which occured well after we had passed through the checkpoint and regained our carry-ons and other possessions was in retaliation for questioning her and requesting to talk to her manager". This is not true. When there is any sort of alarm on a liquid or a bag the person that the property belongs to must go through additional screening. Which is usually a pat down and some screeing of other accesible property. So sorry, that was not done in retaliation.

That may be the policy, but the actual sequence of events does not bear it out. If we had accepted the initial agent's statement that we could not bring our bottle of contact lens solution through the checkpoint--after it had alarmed--we would not have been further searched. If we had accepted the uniformed supervisor's refusal to discuss the issue and left the checkpoint, we would not have been further searched. We were only further searched AFTER I insisted on speaking to the supervisor's manager, and the supervisor's expression and manner of speaking made it very clear that the additional screening was in retaliation. I'm sorry to speak ill of your co-worker, but you weren't there (I assume) and I was.

You also stated, "A few minutes later, the manager (not in uniform) arrived". Management does not wear a uniform. Their uniform is a dress shirt and tie.

My statement was only to differentiate the various employees, not to make any judgement about their uniforms.

Anonymous said...

TSOWilliamReed, here you go again.

"Perhaps the policy is..."

Making up a fatuous response to another discussion to defend the TSAs actions.

Ever heard of Occam's razor?

Instead of your coming up with wholly imaginary responses in defense of the TSA try this:

"...admit no more causes of natural things than such as are both true and sufficient to explain their appearances.

In other words stop just making up any old response time and again to justify the TSAs actions.

It does not give you credibility and your made up responses reflect poorly on the TSA.

Anonymous said...

TSOWilliamReed said...

"(Sidney Alford's) ...research was used in the [failed] court cases against the terrorists, which is why CNN keeps consulting him."

So you think CNN using him as a 'talking head' gives him credibility?

You think what he says is true because "you saw it on CNN"?

You do not understand television news.

TSORon said...

Anonymous said:
“The liquids would need to be carefully distilled at freezing temperatures to extract the required chemicals…”
--------------------------------
For one type of liquid explosive that would be an accurate statement Anon. There are many types though, and one does not need a laboratory or laboratory conditions to produce a viable liquid explosive strong enough to bring a plane down. TSA know this, and it seems you do not. You obviously have access to the internet, so ignorance is no excuse. Do the research for yourself and stop parsing words.

TSOWilliamReed said...

Andrew said...
Anonymous said...
I would also consider filing complaints with the California State Medical Board naming those TSA employees who seem to be practicing medicine.

May 18, 2010 11:10 AM

Thanks. The TSA employees weren't questioning my assertion that the contact lens solution was medically-necessary, they were just refusing (for unstated reasons) to allow me to bring it through the checkpoint.

May 18, 2010 4:45 PM
------------------

Just wanted to point out as food for though. Many TSO's are ex-military and police, so they do have some medical training. Here at our checkpoint we actually have a registered Emergency Technician that is also a part time fire fighter. Now I am not saying every TSO has the required training to make these calls but just pointing out that some of them out there might actually have pretty good medical training.

Anonymous said...

Andrew,
You asked: Do you happen to know if that alternate test is available at the SJC Terminal A checkpoint?

I do not know the answer to that. I work on the other side of the country. Although that should not make a difference. I truly believe that the alternate test should be available at every single checkpoint in the U.S.

Anonymous said...

Q: If it "cannot" store images, how do they get the examples?
TSOWilliamReed said...
From the manufacturer of the machines.

But, but, but... the machines "cannot" store images!!

And TSA has stated that the training machines can save images but this function is disabled at the checkpoints and no one that works that the airport has the ability to reactivate that feature.

Oh, so now the truth comes out. The machines CAN store images... they just disable that feature. I suppose we have to take the TSA's word for that. And take their word that no one at the airport can reactivate it.

Even if we trust the TSA that much... What about maintainance on the machines? What are the chances that a maintance tech might accidently leave the feature on? Or a TSA employee might shoulder-surf the password? Stranger things have happened before. http://www.heraldsun.com.au/travel/news/dubbo-airport-pin-number-taped-to-security-gate/story-fn32891l-1225852130691 - "SECURITY at one of the major regional airports in the Australian state of NSW is under scrutiny after a secure entrance was found to have a secret PIN code posted clearly on a gate."

And of course, airport security employees never do anything... unprofessional with technology. http://www.businesspundit.com/airport-security-fail/

And, of course, all this is moot- all it takes is a cameraphone or concealable digital camera. *click*

Anonymous said...

I am a physician from Japan. I have three vials of vaccine (5 cc/vial = 1 tea spoon) for my colleague in Japan which we have to keep refrigerated, not frozen. This vaccine is not available in Japan yet. They are planning to approve the end of next year. Because of the patient situation, we need this now. I am planning to carry these with sponge type ice pack. It takes about 30 hours from door to door, so I need a large icepack.

I can pack these three vials in my 1 quart-sized plastic bag at the security check point. They can stay cool for few minutes. After the check point, I will pack the vials in the box with ice pack.

The other idea is that I will declare as medicine. If this is the case, do I need a letter from the colleague at the US medical school where I received? Do I have to carry a copy of my medical license? Should I bring something else?

Thank you for your help.

LTSO with Answers said...

RB said...

Is your statement meant to be considered an official statement from TSA in regards to Medically Exempted items?


It is not "official" but I do the job and know the job. You can take my statement the way you would like. I stand by what I say and will say that medically exempted liquids may exceed 100mL to travel with you in carry-on.

"Can be cleared" the question is will it be cleared?

I did not say it will be cleared. The big thing with this is that there are liquids that are not actual medicines that we may clear as medically neccessary. Medical labels don't mean much as we are not trained in any way to evaluate them. Quantities of juices, certain foods, non-prescription medicines, etc. that are declared as medicine will be handled on a case by case basis.

LTSO with Answers said...

Ayn R. Key said...

LTSO without Answers said...
Please note that Ramsy Yousef succeeded to carry NG explosive which was liquid onto an airplane without it being set off. Yes most are volatile but that doesn't make it impossible.

Nitroglycerin is very very very detectable.


You are right Ayn. NG is very detectable. The issue is we do not test every liquid that comes through the checkpoint so it can make it past us without 3-1-1 in place. Testing all liquids that come through is not operationally possible at this time. We need updates to our technology and processes.

LTSO with Answers said...

Andrew said...

Anonymous said...
Andrew,
In response to your letter:
I am not sure what clear care is. I am guessing that it is contact solution. Contact solution is allowed to go. And yes there is something in contact solution that does cause our FIDO to alarm. Fido is a machine that sniffs out an explosive. This is why there is more than one way to test for an explosive. The other test that is readily available (or should be) at all checkpoints would show that your contact solution is okay to pass through the checkpoint.

Clear Care is a contact lens solution. There was no alternate test offered. There was no admission that the machine might possibly have alarmed falsely. Do you happen to know if that alternate test is available at the SJC Terminal A checkpoint?


Andrew some measures that may be taken further to clear an alarmed item may also be used in conjuction with experience and available resources.

TSOWilliamReed said...

Anonymous said...
TSOWilliamReed said...

"(Sidney Alford's) ...research was used in the [failed] court cases against the terrorists, which is why CNN keeps consulting him."

So you think CNN using him as a 'talking head' gives him credibility?

You think what he says is true because "you saw it on CNN"?

You do not understand television news.

May 19, 2010 7:49 AM
----------------

The research is the research, the bomb goes boom the plane goes down. The court cases did not fail because of the research they failed because of the court. The research is still completely applicable and accurate.

Anonymous said...

"The research is the research, the bomb goes boom the plane goes down. The court cases did not fail because of the research they failed because of the court. The research is still completely applicable and accurate."

All research is not created equal. TSA remains obstinately incapable of defending its liquids insanity on the basis of any independent, peer-reviewed research. Perhaps the problem is that no one at TSA can understand the words "independent" or "peer-reviewed."

Ayn R. Key said...

LTSO without answers said...
You are right Ayn. NG is very detectable. The issue is we do not test every liquid that comes through the checkpoint so it can make it past us without 3-1-1 in place. Testing all liquids that come through is not operationally possible at this time. We need updates to our technology and processes.

Things are starting to come together now.

Although chemical detection equipment is favored by many who are considered TSA critics, the TSA did a real hash of trying to implement them the one time they tried. They did such a big hash of it that the whole program was scrapped and 3-1-1 was retained.

I see it differently now, thanks to your answer. The implementation was intentionally hashed in order to not only retain 3-1-1 but in order to advance the implementation of the child porn machines.

Had the puffers and sniffers worked, then there would be no 3-1-1 discussion today and there would be no child porn machine discussion today.

I didn't realize it before, but doing that job poorly was a job very well done. Congratulations.

Ayn R. Key said...

LTSO, the magic potion the TSA is protecting us from is, if pre-mixed, both undetectable AND safe to transport. Agreeing that NG is safe is agreeing that NG is not the liquid explosive that is the basis for 3-1-1.

RB said...

LTSO with Answers said...
RB said...

Is your statement meant to be considered an official statement from TSA in regards to Medically Exempted items?

It is not "official" but I do the job and know the job. You can take my statement the way you would like. I stand by what I say and will say that medically exempted liquids may exceed 100mL to travel with you in carry-on.

"Can be cleared" the question is will it be cleared?

I did not say it will be cleared. The big thing with this is that there are liquids that are not actual medicines that we may clear as medically neccessary. Medical labels don't mean much as we are not trained in any way to evaluate them. Quantities of juices, certain foods, non-prescription medicines, etc. that are declared as medicine will be handled on a case by case basis.

May 21, 2010 1:01 PM


Ok, so tell me just how much juice that a person declares as a medically required item will TSA allow through the checkpoint?

With that answer tell us what your qualifications are to make medical judgements that effect a persons health and well being.

Do you have personal liability insurance?

Blogger Bob said...

If you have liquids, aerosols, or gels that are used for medical purposes, they do not need to adhere to our 3-1-1 policies and do not have to be placed in a baggie.

You may be asked to go through a TSA Family Lane so we can expedite the screening process. The liquids, gels and aerosols will need to be removed from your bags.

Hope this helps!

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

Former Airport Ops Admin said...

So what you're saying is that I can fly with 2-3 20oz bottles of Diet Pepsi because I need to stay hydrated and your people will not refuse me access to the secure area with said bottles of Diet Pepsi? I dehydrate easily and Diet Pepsi is the most effective liquid I have found to work. Medically speaking, my Diet Pepsi is a required liquid.

RB said...

Blogger Bob said...
If you have liquids, aerosols, or gels that are used for medical purposes, they do not need to adhere to our 3-1-1 policies and do not have to be placed in a baggie.

You may be asked to go through a TSA Family Lane so we can expedite the screening process. The liquids, gels and aerosols will need to be removed from your bags.

Hope this helps!

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

May 21, 2010 3:32 PM
.......................
How long will it take to get this information out to the screeners in the field?

It is obvious that what you stated as policy is not being applied today.

TSOWilliamReed said...

Anonymous said...
"The research is the research, the bomb goes boom the plane goes down. The court cases did not fail because of the research they failed because of the court. The research is still completely applicable and accurate."

All research is not created equal. TSA remains obstinately incapable of defending its liquids insanity on the basis of any independent, peer-reviewed research. Perhaps the problem is that no one at TSA can understand the words "independent" or "peer-reviewed."

May 21, 2010 2:53 PM
-------------

or perhaps the government has done the independent or peer-reviewed research but because the exact amount of liquid explosives needed to take down a plane might be sort of useful to anyone that wanted to take down a plane, so they made the research classified.

RB said...

Blogger Bob said...
If you have liquids, aerosols, or gels that are used for medical purposes, they do not need to adhere to our 3-1-1 policies and do not have to be placed in a baggie.

You may be asked to go through a TSA Family Lane so we can expedite the screening process. The liquids, gels and aerosols will need to be removed from your bags.

Hope this helps!

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

May 21, 2010 3:32 PM
................
Bob it is being reported that TSA is prohibiting certain Contact Lens solutions entirely.

If this is remotely true why would TSA not pass this information along to those who travel and are likely to have items confiscated at TSA checkpoints?

Has TSA banned any brand or type of contact lens solution in less than 100ml quantities or in larger quantities?

Anonymous said...

"or perhaps the government has done the independent or peer-reviewed research but because the exact amount of liquid explosives needed to take down a plane might be sort of useful to anyone that wanted to take down a plane, so they made the research classified."

This is rank nonsense. If the research is conducted by the government, it's not independent. If it's classified, it hasn't been peer-reviewed in any meaningful sense of the word. And since no such research exists, it's like arguing about angels on the head of a pin anyway.

Anonymous said...

A person has made the case that they were not allowed to carry contact lens solution through a checkpoint. After having been allowed through many other times and seeming to be in compliance with 'the rules'.

A level headed, calm inquiry brought them a retaliatory screening.

TSOWilliamReed responds that some TSA staff "are ex-military and police, so they do have some medical training."

I am sure the passenger feels better knowing that involved, including those who ordered and delivered the extra screening, may have been "ex-military and police" with "some medical training".

TSOWilliamReed said...

Anonymous said...
"or perhaps the government has done the independent or peer-reviewed research but because the exact amount of liquid explosives needed to take down a plane might be sort of useful to anyone that wanted to take down a plane, so they made the research classified."

This is rank nonsense. If the research is conducted by the government, it's not independent. If it's classified, it hasn't been peer-reviewed in any meaningful sense of the word. And since no such research exists, it's like arguing about angels on the head of a pin anyway.

May 24, 2010 2:49 PM
-------------

No I believe what is nonsense is believing that multiple countries in the world would use the same size for limiting liquids and non of them did any sort of research on it. That is just crazy.

Anonymous said...

"No I believe what is nonsense is believing that multiple countries in the world would use the same size for limiting liquids and non of them did any sort of research on it. That is just crazy."

Other countries' limits are because TSA and the US have browbeaten them into having those limits. And, honestly, you people are the same ones who think a flip-flop and 3.5 ounces of Head & Shoulders can bring down a 747 and that taking pictures of little children's genitals makes people safe.

Ayn R. Key said...

Ayn R Key wrote...
From your point of view, you have encountered very few bad apples. Now let's look at it another way.

Any TSO who violates my constitutional rights is a bad apple, even if they are obeying orders. I do not accept the Nuremberg defense that the TSA has as a core policy.


GSOLTSO wrote...
You are using your own interpretation of your Rights.

No, I'm using the constitution - you know, that document you keep copies of in the TSA lavatories on little spools.

The regulations we have in place right now have not been defined by SCOTUS or any other branch of the government as unconstitutional at this time.

Pay attention please. I wrote that I do not accept the Nuremberg defense. You just gave me the Nuremberg defense. "The rules say what I'm doing is right, therefore it is." At Nuremberg the judge ruled that some actions are wrong without regard to what the rules say, without regard to what orders are given, that any person should know that certain actions are just plain wrong. You have failed that very simple test. You have used the Nuremberg defense to say that what you do is right.

I am quite certain that if the majority of Americans thought that having to be screened to get on a plane (whether it be AIT, WTMD, HHMD, or pat down) it would be changed and the agency would make those changes.

You probably left out a few words, to make it that if a majority of Americans thought screening was wrong then it would be changed.

And you couldn't be more wrong.

There have been so many examples in recent years of actions taken by the government that the majority opposed that I am ashamed on your behalf that you made that argument. Moreover the TSA has gone out of its way to ensure that it is not held accountable by congress.

And if you actually bother to look, what screenings am I opposing? You seem to indicate that I oppose any and every method of screening in your comment, which means you are lying about me. I suppose you need to because otherwise you would not be able to make your counter-argument. I object to non-sensical rules that accompany most screenings, I seriously object to WBI/AIT/insert new name here/child porn machines, and I resolutely and without reservation object to WBI/AIT when it uses BXR instead of MMW.

My list of objections is prioritized, while your strawman version appears to not be. My biggest, chief, and foremost complaint is that BXR is used when MMW is available. My second is that AIT/WBI is entirely the wrong way to screen. My third is the silly and non-sensical rules that accompany regular screening.

Do you understand that now? It is a prioritized list, and it doesn't cover every method and instance of screening. Some screening is not on that list. Other screening is on that list. Some screening is good. Other screening is bad. And some is very bad.

Do you understand that now?

RB said...

Bob it is being reported that TSA is prohibiting certain Contact Lens solutions entirely.

If this is remotely true why would TSA not pass this information along to those who travel and are likely to have items confiscated at TSA checkpoints?

Has TSA banned any brand or type of contact lens solution in less than 100ml quantities or in larger quantities?

TSOWilliamReed said...

Anonymous said...
A person has made the case that they were not allowed to carry contact lens solution through a checkpoint. After having been allowed through many other times and seeming to be in compliance with 'the rules'.

A level headed, calm inquiry brought them a retaliatory screening.

TSOWilliamReed responds that some TSA staff "are ex-military and police, so they do have some medical training."

I am sure the passenger feels better knowing that involved, including those who ordered and delivered the extra screening, may have been "ex-military and police" with "some medical training".
-----------------------

Actually the reason that item wasn't allowed was because it alarmed an explosive detection test. I don't know what test they did but that was in that origional post.

TSOWilliamReed said...

Anonymous said...
"No I believe what is nonsense is believing that multiple countries in the world would use the same size for limiting liquids and non of them did any sort of research on it. That is just crazy."

Other countries' limits are because TSA and the US have browbeaten them into having those limits. And, honestly, you people are the same ones who think a flip-flop and 3.5 ounces of Head & Shoulders can bring down a 747 and that taking pictures of little children's genitals makes people safe.

May 26, 2010 2:51 PM
------------------

sorry, we don't get flip flops much in Alaska but I have seen may different brands of flip flops designed with hidden storage compartments. 3.5 oz of head and shoulders would only hurt dandruff not a plane, 3.5 oz of an explosive slurrie mixture however could kill multiple people.

TSOWilliamReed said...

RB said...
Bob it is being reported that TSA is prohibiting certain Contact Lens solutions entirely.

If this is remotely true why would TSA not pass this information along to those who travel and are likely to have items confiscated at TSA checkpoints?

Has TSA banned any brand or type of contact lens solution in less than 100ml quantities or in larger quantities?

May 26, 2010 4:54 PM
--------------------

No RB its is being reported that someones contact lens cleaner alarmed the explosives detection test multiple times and therefore isn't allowed through the checkpoint. No secret policies, no secret war on medical liquids, it just alarmed the explosives test multiple times in a row.

Anonymous said...

Then where's the research, TSOWIlliamReed?

RB said...

TSOWilliamReed said...
RB said...
Bob it is being reported that TSA is prohibiting certain Contact Lens solutions entirely.

If this is remotely true why would TSA not pass this information along to those who travel and are likely to have items confiscated at TSA checkpoints?

Has TSA banned any brand or type of contact lens solution in less than 100ml quantities or in larger quantities?

May 26, 2010 4:54 PM
--------------------

No RB its is being reported that someones contact lens cleaner alarmed the explosives detection test multiple times and therefore isn't allowed through the checkpoint. No secret policies, no secret war on medical liquids, it just alarmed the explosives test multiple times in a row.

May 27, 2010 12:19 PM
.............
Reed, the information I have is that TSA has issues with "Clear Care" brand contact lens solution.

Are you aware of this?

TSOWilliamReed said...

Anonymous said...
Then where's the research, TSOWIlliamReed?

May 27, 2010 2:01 PM
--------------

Don't ask me, I don't have that high of security clearance. I know one STI/STSO that says hes been to the course that clears you for that information but he can't tell us anything about it except that it has been done. But honestly do you really think that making the exact amount of liquid explosives needed to take down a plane public knowledge would be a good idea? Kind of helping the bad guys on that one since they don't have their own planes to test explosives out on and if they did they would catch a lot of peoples eyes if test planes started blowing up in the middle of the desert over seas.

Anonymous said...

TSOWilliamReed said...
3.5 oz of head and shoulders would only hurt dandruff not a plane, 3.5 oz of an explosive slurrie mixture however could kill multiple people.


But two bottles of 3.4 oz "explosive slurrie mixture" poses absolutely no threat, Right? That's why you'd let it on board.

Halley said...

When flying through LAX on Tuesday, May 18th around 2pm on Virgin Atlantic airlines (I'm going to the trouble of detail in the hopes that someone cares, and may follow up - I'm not holding my breath), my baggage was searched, it was found that I had one too many lighters. (Funny how three bic lighters as opposed to two really tips the scale...) I'm definitely fine with this, but when they re-screened my baggage the extraordinarily unpleasant woman operating the xray machine intentionally spent an uncommon amount of time inspecting the bag that was following mine. I reached in (not far at all, 4 inches?) to pull my bag out. My flight was late. My bag had completely passed through the xray. This prompted the woman to yell at my loudly. To scowl at me, and proceed to take _intentionally even longer_ inspecting the bag that was following mine. During the same screening, it was also determined that my linen skirt posed a threat, that I required an additional pat down, to which I submitted willingly, until the pat down proceeded to pull my skirt down, exposing me to everyone in the screening area.

I travel a lot. I live in NYC. I've lived here since before 9/11. For the years following the events of that day, when I was on one way flights, I was happy to submit to additional screening. When I have to do so because of the TSA not liking the cut of my skrit, or the size of my bottle of aloe on a trip to Mexico, or an extra lighter, when I get yelled at for trying to wear flip flops through a metal detector, or accidentally forgetting a half of a bottle of water in my bag, I feel like a criminal. I don't deserve to feel like a criminal. The tactics and approach of the TSA is heavy handed - for too many of the employees, it seems to be a power trip. I pay a premium to fly, I should be treated with respect. it's part of my job to travel quite a bit. When I go on vacation, I anticipate that my experiences will be enjoyable. I don't need to be yelled at, to have my clothes accidentally removed in public, to have a TSA agent cut their eyes at me, to be spoken to like a child.

It's frustrating, because every little incident becomes a burden for every other traveller to bear. Hundreds of millions of people are inconvenienced by the small handful causing actual problems, while as tax payers, we're funding Homeland Security to find and monitor the few threats that there are - and yet we have to oblige these seemingly arbitrary regulations and endure the humiliation of being presumed guilty before subjecting all of our travelers to the ridiculousness that is airport screening these days.

Please let me keep my shoes on. Please lift the liquid ban. If I pass through the x-ray machine without setting off an alarm, can you please keep your hands off my body?

I'm also curious if any of the people responding to the comments here are actually endorsed by the TSA - while the seemingly combative language of the folks using TSO in their handle would seem appropriate given my experiences with TSA employees, I really hope that a government funded blog isn't supporting these voices.

RB said...

I contact the makers of "Clear Care" brand of contact lens solutions and asked if they were aware of any problems with their product when being screened by TSA.

They stated that "Clear Care" contains a very low concentration of hydrogen peroxide and should present no problems for TSA.

Yet it seems TSA cannot or will not clear this medically necessary item consistently at all checkpoints.

The only reason for this is that TSA employee neither have the skills or abilities to determine if something is dangerous or not.

And that folks is who is supposedly watching out for our safety, people who can't tell the difference between a dangerous substance and one that is clearly not dangerous.

Dog and pony show, but no real security!

Anonymous said...

Halley said in part
we're funding Homeland Security to find and monitor the few threats that there are - and yet we have to oblige these seemingly arbitrary regulations and endure the humiliation of being presumed guilty before subjecting all of our travelers to the ridiculousness that is airport screening these days.
-----------------------------------
How many of the bad guys bring their resume to the airport with them? Is TSA just supposed to take your word that you have no bad intent? Do you walk into a bank that you never been in and try to cash a check with out ID? Or should the bank assume you're who you say you are?

Halley further said
Please let me keep my shoes on. Please lift the liquid ban. If I pass through the x-ray machine without setting off an alarm, can you please keep your hands off my body?
I know you meant Metal Detector. But the metal detector only checks for metal items. If the skirt or any other clothing is bulky or doesn't fit the contour of the body you could be hiding any thing not metal under it. Thats why you got the additional screening
-----------------------------------
Finally said
I'm also curious if any of the people responding to the comments here are actually endorsed by the TSA - while the seemingly combative language of the folks using TSO in their handle would seem appropriate given my experiences with TSA employees, I really hope that a government funded blog isn't supporting these voices.
-----------------------------------
Everyone complains about their right being violated by having to go through security. Now you want to exclude TSA employees from their 5th amendment rights.

Andrew said...

I sent my letter through TSA.gov's "Got Feedback" form on May 17, eleven days ago. I included current and accurate contact information (phone, email and postal address) and selected the "I would like to be contacted" option. Eleven days ago. When can I expect a response?

HappyToHelp said...

Halley said...
" I'm also curious if any of the people responding to the comments here are actually endorsed by the TSA”

TSA does not guarantee or warrant that any information posted by individuals on this blog is correct, and disclaims any liability for any loss or damage resulting from reliance on any such information. TSA may not be able to verify, does not warrant or guarantee, and assumes no liability for anything posted on this website by any other person.

Tim
TSA Blog Team

Andrew said...

I sent my letter through TSA.gov's "Got Feedback" form on May 17, eleven days ago. I included current and accurate contact information (email, phone, postal mail) and made sure to select the "please contact me" option when submitting. Eleven days ago. When can I expect a response?

Anonymous said...

I just love it when those of you that THINK they know anything about security start ranting and raving about how some poor TSO "violated" you rights somehow by asking you a question about your meds. Or by telling you that you couldn't take some item with you. You want EVERY checkpoint to be exactly the same and do everything exactly the same. And there is where I get my theory that those of you with NO SECURITY OR LAW ENFORCEMENT EXPERIENCE have no idea what you are talking about when you complain that ALL checkpoints don't do EVERYTHING exactly the same. In fact you DON'T want everything done exactly the same. YOU might not LIKE that idea but thats too bad. As a person with over 30yrs in law enforcement I can tell you that you NEVER want to check the same building at the same time every night. Even the bad guys know that. At least the smart ones do.I will use my McDonalds analogy for those of you that have trouble understanding theories. You MIGHT want to have an almost identical hamburger in Boston and in Memphis--you expect that. But you DONT want the exact same security in both of those airports. WHY? Because then the terrorist can go to Memphis, check out the security there and apply his knowledge to Boston's airport. There will ALWAYS be differences. If you would actually take the time to think about it instead of just complaining about EVERYTHING that TSA does you will discover that it makes sense. Sometimes the differences are on purpose. Some are not. Get over it. If you want to fly there are going to be rules when you do so. Nobody is making you fly. Just like when you drive. Do all cops apply ALL traffic laws exactly the same way? Not that I'm aware of. No difference here. Instead of being so angry about having to follow a couple of simple rules try being part of the solution. Like following the rules. Is that such a hard idea to grasp? Its such a simple idea. You moan and groan that TSA doesn't have your best interest at heart. Can you name ONE airplane thats gone down since they took over? As for the so called "bombers" that you keep bringing up--not ONE of those incidents STARTED IN THE USA. So how do you blame the TSA screeners for that? If it were up to ME all flights would be screened the way the Israili's do it.

Erika said...

Remember how this ban was supposed to be lifted by 2010? Hah. I'll bet money that all those post-checkpoint fast food joints are paying lots of money to make sure this ban is never lifted, no matter how ludicrous it is.

Anonymous said...

Bob, a TSA manager is saying that the information being supplied to the public is incorrect.

I ask that you review the discussion at and if possible clear up the confusion which apparently is in play regarding medically exempted LGA.

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/travel-safety-security/1090233-prescription-mouth-wash-allowed-prescribed-dentist.html

Ryan62 said...

Ayn R Key you posted this standard:
"You have to produce one of two liquid bombs:
1. It is possible to assemble it on the terminal side of the airport, and every single separate ingredient is considered safe.
2. It is assembled in a chem lab as a liquid, and is safe to transport to the airport, and would be considered safe going through the checkpoint."

Ok, here we go...
KAL Flight 858 brought down using Picatinny Liquid Explosive, also know as PLX.

Or how about a commercially available explosive like Kinepack? (Yes I realize that is a solid mixed with a liquid.)
Or how about MEKP which was used in the US by an environmental terrorist.
Your imaginary standard "you hit a pothole you blow up" is laughable and proof you don't know that much about explosives.
I find it interesting that you set this standard, but when it was pointed out to you that the Bojinka plot explosive made it to the plane (apparently there are no potholes in Manilla) your argument suddenly becomes "yes but it is very detectable". If Blogger Bob moves the goal post like that you all start screaming "LIAR!!!". Why should we apply a different standard to you?

Anonymous said...

You know what since people think that TSA is a waste of time and that they are out to get your shampoo. Why not take the bus and not deal with them any more. Or how abou you just get rid of TSA and fly how safe would you really feel?

Not very I bet.

Andrew said...

RB said...
[...]
Yet it seems TSA cannot or will not clear this medically necessary item consistently at all checkpoints.
[...]

On the subject of consistency, we flew through SJC Terminal A again last weekend and this time decanted our Clear Care into unmarked 3oz squeeze bottles which were placed in our 3-1-1 bags. They didn't receive a second glance and we were cleared through the checkpoint without incident.

We each had two unmarked 3oz squeeze bottles of Clear Care (that is, 12oz total); the same amount that was in the bottle that was the subject of the original complaint. Could someone explain to me why one 12oz bottle of medically-necessary liquid is not allowed but four 3oz bottles are?

TSOWilliamReed said...

RB said...
I contact the makers of "Clear Care" brand of contact lens solutions and asked if they were aware of any problems with their product when being screened by TSA.

They stated that "Clear Care" contains a very low concentration of hydrogen peroxide and should present no problems for TSA.

Yet it seems TSA cannot or will not clear this medically necessary item consistently at all checkpoints.

The only reason for this is that TSA employee neither have the skills or abilities to determine if something is dangerous or not.

And that folks is who is supposedly watching out for our safety, people who can't tell the difference between a dangerous substance and one that is clearly not dangerous.

Dog and pony show, but no real security!

May 28, 2010 5:04 PM
----------------

RB, there is no ban on "Clear Care". I don't know where you are getting this information but if a bottle of "Clear Care" passes the test for liquid explosives then it can go. You say the manufacturer says the bottles won't set off the alarm, well that one did so it isn't allowed on the plane. If it doesn't set off the alarm for liquid explosives then it is ok to go.

RB said...

TSOWilliamReed said...
RB said...
I contact the makers of "Clear Care" brand of contact lens solutions and asked if they were aware of any problems with their product when being screened by TSA.

They stated that "Clear Care" contains a very low concentration of hydrogen peroxide and should present no problems for TSA.

Yet it seems TSA cannot or will not clear this medically necessary item consistently at all checkpoints.

The only reason for this is that TSA employee neither have the skills or abilities to determine if something is dangerous or not.

And that folks is who is supposedly watching out for our safety, people who can't tell the difference between a dangerous substance and one that is clearly not dangerous.

Dog and pony show, but no real security!

May 28, 2010 5:04 PM
----------------

RB, there is no ban on "Clear Care". I don't know where you are getting this information but if a bottle of "Clear Care" passes the test for liquid explosives then it can go. You say the manufacturer says the bottles won't set off the alarm, well that one did so it isn't allowed on the plane. If it doesn't set off the alarm for liquid explosives then it is ok to go.
..............
Based on comments from others and my own research I don't think you understand the problem.

Clear Care brand contact lens solution contains 3% hydrogen peroxide.

Apparently sizes over 3.4 ounces are tested since they exceed the 100ml limit and Clear Care alarms whereas sizes less than 3.4 oz are not routinely tested.

So I could bring on several 100ml bottles and not likely have any issue other than compromising the sterile packaging.

Apparently TSA cannot tell a harmless liquid from one that is not harmless.

That is the real problem.

TSA ETD testing is alarming on items in very low concentrations that offer no hazard what so ever yet are being restricted from aircraft.

A confidence builder if you ask me!

Anonymous said...

can anyone point me to where tooth PASTE is part of the 311 with liquids and gels on the web site. my tube of paste was taken in Denver. strange due to the fact I fly every week and this is a first.

Anonymous said...

For all of you who dilike the procedures to fly on a plane..... there are several other options of transportation available and you do have the right to choose one of them instead of flying.

RB said...

Thank you for contacting CIBA Vision regarding your experience with Clear Care® Cleaning & Disinfecting Solution. CIBA Vision takes great pride in manufacturing quality products and we are constantly evaluating our products to ensure our customers receive the services and products they have come to expect and deserve. Consumer feedback is very much appreciated and is beneficial in maintaining customer satisfaction. We apologize for your experience and any inconvenience it may have caused.

Clear Care® contains hydrogen peroxide which is on the list of TSA banned solutions; however, contact lens solutions are exempt and should be allowed for carry on. Although our Clear Care travel size is TSA compliant, it is at the discretion of the individual TSA agent to allow the product to pass. Unfortunately, some airports and agents are more strict than others, and will not allow the solution to be carried on the plane.

Thank you again for contacting us and for your support of CIBA Vision products.

Sincerely,
CIBA Vision
Patient Relations
..............
The real question is why TSA cannot distinguish between Contact Lens Cleaner and explosives?

TSA?

Ayn R. Key said...

Ryan62,

You cannot accuse me of moving the goal-posts if I include all of the requirements up front.

Bojinka - Nitroglycerine is detectable.

I wrote, for point 2, "It is assembled in a chem lab as a liquid, and is safe to transport to the airport, and would be considered safe going through the checkpoint."

That last clause, the "considered safe", means that you belive TSOs would clear nitro-glycerine. How many explosives can be found by puffers? So now you mention PLX, which you believe would also clear security. By the way, PLX is very volatile making transport difficult, and I seriously doubt that any competent TSO would doubt the individual components are suspicious.

I listed ALL the requirements up front, and every single proposed counter-example by defenders of the Nuremberg Defense has failed to meet ALL the requirements. I've never moved the goalpost, defenders of the Nuremberg Defense have never met the goalpost. In your case you keep forgetting that it must be able to withstand scrutiny.

I listed two explosives with a list of characteristics. One of those two explosives MUST exists for 3-1-1 to make sense. Neither of those two explosives exists.

Ayn R. Key said...

Well, Ryan62, if you are going to accuse me of moving the goalposts, you must then show which criteria I added after you provide an answer. You leaving out a criteria and then claiming I added it later doesn't count towards moving the goalposts.

PLX? MEKP? Both readily detectable, which fails the "get it past security" part of my requirements. You did quote me saying "considered safe going through the checkpoint" so you can't claim I left it out.

All it takes is some simple explosive detection technology, the technology that was deliberately flubbed by the TSA in order to preserve 3-1-1, that technology.

JM said...

I have an ulcer that requires me to drink a meal replacement shake (i.e., "Boost" or "Ensure") every 45 minutes to keep it under control. I will be taking three flights to get to my destination, so I will need to bring approximately 16 x 237ml bottles onboard. How exactly should I declare that to the TSO? Is there a special line I need to stand in to declare it? What do I say to the TSO? Thank you.

Donna D F said...

The Seattle TSA employee should know how to convert 100ml to oz. They took my Clinque face washing soap just because the tube looked larger then the fluid oz held inside the tube. The TSA employee did not want to discuss the measurements with me. I was not happy with the situation. I was able to fly from London England to Chicago IL with the product and the other TSA employees did not have any problems however when flying out of Seattle which was my last leg of my flight. The TSA employee in Seattle took the product from me and would not discuss the measurement. I think that they should be educated to converting ml to fl oz if they are then they are failing to do their job properly.

Anonymous said...

I would like to know, TSA, why an obviously SEALED BOX of perfume in CELLOPHANE purchased, from Duty Free, 5 meters away from the boarding area was denied?? I'd love to know what female TSA thief is sporting my 'freebie'- 75$ worth of perfume.. SO IRRITATING!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I just think your 3-1-1 policy is for the most part, totally ridiculous.

Here's the 4-1-1, TSA:

TOOTHPASTE?!?!?! What am I gonna do with toothpaste...drive-by brush everyone's teeth on board? GIVE ME A BREAK! What a bunch of control freaks you are.

I think that if you are going to force people to travel with tiny amounts, that YOU should pony up for the full size products that we have to buy at our destinations and then throw away.

You promote an agenda that is mired in control and ineffective processes, and WE have to pay for it on OUR NICKLE. I'm saying no way, you don't deserve my hard earned money.

I'm taking the train from now on. It's comfortable, relatively inexpensive, and doesn't require me to pack elf-sized toiletries. Air travel isn't worth all of the hassle, indignity, and expense. Think about THAT the next time you brush your teeth.

Anonymous said...

I do not like the arbitrary way that things are taken from me during airport screening.

A number of times I have had things taken from me that were clearly labeled in ounces and grams by weight. Even if the container is obviously under 3.4 fluid ounces (100ml). There is no differentiation between the mass and volume of a container.

As I recall from my school days water is evaluated that 1ml of plain water weighs 1g. Of course there is all of that cool stuff about Standard Temperature and Pressure as well as elevation. So the 100ml of water will have a mas of 100 grams. Making that to regular ounces that is 3.53 ounces which is over "3.4". However you can clearly see that some heavy pastes and creams that are measured in grams that have a density greater than water can be in a container smaller than 100ml of volume. But, these containers are labeled in "ounces" so they are taken away without cause.

The first time this happened was a couple of years ago and as chance had it I had arrived 4 hours early for a domestic flight. I went through screening and was asked to open my carry on bag. The gentle man stated he had to take my personal property because it was over 3.4 ounces. I explained the difference between mass and volume and he did not seem the type to understand the concepts let alone that they were different. I was given the explanation that he was told to look for items that were labeled as 3.4 ounces or over. Anything with a number over 3.4 was taken. I showed him some of the things which I had in my 1 qt. bag that were clearly labeled in "fl. oz." Though he was perplexed that a container labeled at 3.0 fl. oz. was obviously larger than the other container labeled over 3.4 oz. he seemed to disregard it as some sort of physical anomaly that could not be explained. I proposed the idea if the container had the part of the label specifying any units of measure removed what would he do? He had no answer for that. When asked if the container said "0.35 pounds" would that be ok to take on a plane he said that would be fine. So there is where I really identified the problem. Though it was difficult to explain the relation to him about pounds and how ounces are a fraction of a pound and were not related to volume. I was calm and sincerely professional about all of this with the gentleman.

I had plenty of time and I really wanted some answers about the rule so I asked for his supervisor. I got a similar reaction though the supervisor did seem to know that the ounces and fluid ounces were different but he did not know why or how.

With time passing I did need to move along. I agreed to surrender my property and have it destroyed as it was not of great enough value to miss a flight over. I kindly asked for a document which I could sign giving them the authority to destroy my personal property and asked for a receipt of the transaction. I thought this was normal government practice as happens in some ares with customs if they feel your customs declaration was not clear enough to import goods and you do not want to return it to the sender. Which also happened to me a number of years ago (governments continue to impress me).

They thought that sounded very reasonable and they contacted someone by phone asking if there were any documents available. It seems there are no documents associated with the seizure of your personal property in this situation.

Very interesting experience. I have since learned to avoid carrying anything over 3.4 units of anything as to avoid unwanted delay and loss of property.

So they have succeeded in making me give up my will to keep personal property which is my right for the comfort of not being hassled by federal employees.

I see my efforts to make an example at the inspection level did no good even for the education of the inspectors.

Thought you might enjoy my story and my opinion.

E2M said...

Having this 3-1-1 rule doesn't seem to be a big issue now that travelers are use to abiding by it. I don't see any reason why we would want to lift the policy if it is saving lives. I would rather follow the policy if it keeps us safe.

Andrew said...

E2M said...
"Having this 3-1-1 rule doesn't seem to be a big issue now that travelers are use to abiding by it. I don't see any reason why we would want to lift the policy if it is saving lives. I would rather follow the policy if it keeps us safe."

311 never "kept us safe". Unless you mean it "kept us safe" from being able to carry our own personal non-hazardous property onto a private commercial airplane.

David Ferar said...

Now, the debate on liquid containing is increasing day by day. And the solution is seeming creating more controversies.So, TSA should try to reach at an accepting point that will satisfy everyone soon.