Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Airport Travel Time Status Updates for 11/24/2010

Children with thank you sign for TSA.
Stay tuned as this post will be updated throughout the day. We hope you find the information useful.

This picture was taken earlier today at CVG.

Operational Updates as of 5 p.m. EST: (Final Report)

Dallas/Fort Worth: One Advanced Imaging Technology (AIT) opt-out today, and wait times consistently under 12 minutes.

Dallas Love Field: Wait times under 3 minutes.

Salt Lake City: Wait times no more than 5 minutes at both checkpoints one and two; when open, checkpoint 3 has a 2-minute wait time. Across the airport, we have all lanes open and 6 AITs in operation.

Atlanta: 39 total AIT opt outs today (again, out of 47,000 fliers). All were screened and continued to their flights.

Newark: Average wait times today by terminal were 6 minutes for A and C, 11 minutes for B.

New Orleans: The longest reported wait time was approximately 13 minutes. Six passengers opted out of AIT screening. All were screened and continued to their flights.

Iowa and Kansas: No disruptions, no wait times greater than 10 minutes. According to federal security director, lots of passenger compliments.

Denver: Current wait times are 3-4 minutes per checkpoint.

Colorado Springs: 5-minute average wait time, and no AIT opt-outs.

Minneapolis: Wait times are currently 5-10 mins. No incidents.

Detroit: No wait time over 20 minutes all day.

Green Bay: Wait time is 3 minutes.

Indianapolis: 24-minute peak this morning at 6 a.m. Nothing near since.

Louisville: 5-10 minute wait times.

Los Angeles: Los Angeles: 113 AIT opt outs across LAX’s 8 terminals, which is less than 1 percent of the approximately 50,000 travelers screened at LAX today. All AIT opt-outs were screened and continued to their flights.

Charlotte: 18,000 passengers screened so far today, and estimated 24,000 will be screened by end of day. 1 AIT opt out today.

Cincinnati: The peak wait time was 10 minutes, and average is 5 minutes.

Chicago O’Hare: The longest wait was 15 minutes at one checkpoint, and has been under 10 minutes airport-wide for the most part.

Cleveland: Under 20 minutes for wait times all day, with a 10-minute average. Current wait times are less than 5 minutes. 0.66 percent opt out rate today.

Boston: Approximately 56,000 passengers screened with 300 AIT opt outs, which is less than 1 percent of all travelers and less than a normal day at the airport’s 17 AITs. All were screened and continued to their flights. The longest wait time all day was 12 minutes in terminal A in very early morning, and it was very short lived given all lanes were open.

Detroit: 25,000 passengers screened today, and 57 AIT opt-outs. All were screened and continued to their flights.

As of 3 p.m. EST:

We’re receiving reports of minimal wait times across the entire country – from Honolulu to Myrtle Beach and everywhere in between – and no disruptions.

Cincinnati: Nearly 5,500 passengers had been screened as of 12:30, 15 of whom opted out of AIT. All were screened and continued to their flights.

Denver: Walk-up service (virtually no wait times).

St. Louis: Wait times are less than 10 minutes, and seven passengers have opted for pat-down instead of AIT over the course of the day. All were screened and continued to their flights.

Miami: Some checkpoints have no lines at all.

Memphis: Wait times of 5 minutes or less, and five AIT opt-outs.

As of 12:30 EST:


Atlanta: Current wait time is 5 minutes, and AIT opt outs total 26 for the day so far, out of an estimated 47,000 passengers to be screened today (not including incoming international).


Seattle: Wait times below normal levels.

Wait times at all airports in the northwest and Rocky Mountain regions remain at or below normal levels.

Burbank, CA: We measured the wait times at one of our checkpoints vs. the coffee shop just inside the terminal past the checkpoint…the coffee shop took longer than the checkpoint. 

As of 10:30 a.m. EST:

Miami: No AIT opt outs.

Burlington, VT: Following a pat-down, one passenger commented, “That’s it? That’s all there is to it?  Why is the media making such a big deal?   I’ve received more invasive pat downs just going to a rock concert.”

As of 10 a.m. EST:

Boston: Highest wait time was 12 minutes, and that was short-lived.  Many, many compliments and few AIT opt outs.

Buffalo: No significant wait times. The longest wait time might have been 10 minutes this morning.

Bradley: Minimal wait times and no AIT opt outs

Phoenix, LAX and San Diego remain normal.

As of 9:30 a.m. EST:

Minneapolis/St. Paul: No problems, lots of passenger compliments, waits around 10 minutes.

Newark: No problems at EWR. More TSOs than passengers right now. Wait times minimal. There was a 25-minute wait time at B1 at 0430 right when the checkpoint opened, but whittled it down quickly.

LaGuardia: Very few AIT opt outs. No passengers opting out of a pat down. Wait times are very low. During the morning rush we had wait times of 15 minutes at two checkpoints.

Manchester, NH: No waits. Very positive passenger feedback. Here since 0500 with no issues.

San Francisco: No issues.

Albany: less than 30 minutes at all ALB lanes, no disruptions.

Portland, Maine: less than 15-minute waits, no issues.

Harrisburg, PA: Wait time is about 5 minutes, no long lines and passengers have been very supportive. 

No problems and minimal wait times at Kansas City (MCI), Wichita (ICT), Des Moines (DSM) and Omaha (OMA).

Phoenix: Normal operations.

Live shots on local TV at SLC show no lines at checkpoint.

Richmond: Wait times are under 10 minutes, no AIT opt outs, lots of thank yous.

Norfolk: Wait times under 7 minutes.

Reagan (DCA): Wait times are basically 0.

BWI: No waits, only 4 AIT opt outs.

LAX: Less than 5-minute waits.

Denver: Had 39-minute waits at 5 am, but now we're under 20 minutes. No protests yet; no one has opted out of AIT.

From Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma: Busiest checkpoint is less than 10 minutes' wait, rest are 3-5 minutes. 

Tampa: All wait times have remained under 20 minutes. No disruptions.

St. Louis: Highest wait time was 17 minutes early on for short period, but now about 5 minutes.




Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

151 comments:

Your friend Ethel said...

Well that interesting since there are reports that TSA has turned the scanners off at LAX as well as other aiports. then there are observations that the randomness of the patdowns is lower then in days past.


Whats wrong bob, worried you would have lynch mobs at your door. Nice way of trying to claim a victory over national optoutday, by skewing the field by dirty tricks. This is not over by a long shot and will continue.

Anonymous said...

Blogger Bob posted: "Burlington, VT: Following a pat-down, one passenger commented, “That’s it? That’s all there is to it? Why is the media making such a big deal? I’ve received more invasive pat downs just going to a rock concert.”"

Frankly, I wish this is all I'd gotten. Instead, I ended up cancelling all my remaining flights in 2010 and remain in a high state of anxiety for an unavoidable cross-country trip as to what I'll get this time.

That's fine, Bob, if this person had a decent experience, but it doesn't change what occurred prior to the revisions to the selection process and what seems to be revisions in the actual pat down (both being widely reported in the press and on various travel forums).

More simply stated, it may actually be better because of changes implemented or various memos being distributed.

It doesn't lighten my anxiety that we are going back to what I got in early November. And this kind of post seems to minimize the experiences some of us have endured already.

I can only hope that whatever changes have apparently been made or whatever communications that have gone out to TSA employees to try to standardize the experience apply in January, when the travel season lightens up.

(screen saved for future reference)

Anonymous said...

You need to check your sources Curtis. from three groups of friends traveling out of DFW (differnet terminals) there each reporting 15-25 minutes to get though and staff is acting weird smiling but still yelling.

So much for highly trained and professional.

Anonymous said...

Okay i smell a rat. TSA for once is being nice......a little to nice. Makes me wonder if after this weekend it will be business as usual with the normal barking, yelling, and screaming as well as the typical childish unprofessional behavior.

sounds like someone got out the polish and lipstick.

Anonymous said...

Awesome! First!

Anonymous said...

kind of hard to opt out when the scanners are roped and turned off.

TSM, been here... said...

1st off, the whole "National Opt Out Day" was the result of one idiot's post on one web page. No "National Call", No pilot's union support, etc. The news media whipped itself into a frenzy because someone linked to this troll's site and started yelling "Nation wide opt out day".
Unfortunately, we fell victim to this and even posted a link to it in a previous blog.

I find it ironic that calling for an opt out of the AIT would result in far more pat-downs which is exactly what most people are protesting!

People really need to get over themselves and the American sense of "entitlement" that most of our citizens seem to have.

Anonymous said...

Just as I guessed..There was a lot of tough talk but none or VERY few willing to put up or shut up..And likely (I predict) those who raised such a big stink will smile in line and complain to any camera, blog or poor sap willing to listen,

Brown Sugar Babies said...

I'm allergic to latex - what are the provisions in case of a pat down ... also...how frequently do they change their gloves. Diseases can be transmitted topically. The gloves protect them, but not us. Thank you in advance for your response.

Anonymous said...

I think this post is a pretty lame attempt to gloss over the serious concerns many people have. I sincerely doubt TSA would accurately report any serious incidents at an airport: this blog is to make TSA look good.

Anonymous said...

Kind of hard to opt our of the whole body scanners if they are not being used.

Brian said...

The TSA is truly stepping up the propaganda. I think the TSA must have finally trained Curtis on what it actually means to do public relations.

Anonymous said...

How many airports that have them are even using the Full Body Scanners? How can people opt out if there is nothing to opt out from?

Anonymous said...

Sad, but not unexpected. As pointed out right in the constitution, people will put up with a lot to keep the status quo.

I always felt that the idea of National Opt Out Day was counterproductive anyway. You would end up potentially causing delays for other people who just want to get to their destination on time, and that would almost certainly bring backlash against the protest.

Let's face it, America has spoken - as a whole we value illusionary safety over liberty. This little tizzy over the recently enhanced pat-downs and x-ray machines will blow over after the holiday season and we'll be more than ready to bend over for the inevitable cavity searches. We are but a vocal minority - our battle is lost.

Andy said...

What's "remaiormal"? Is that a typo or a word you made up? It looks like a portmanteau of "remain normal." Just because it's Thanksgiving, doesn't mean you can take a vacation from proofreading.

Anonymous said...

This is awesome!!! Thanks Bob. Awesome job by our TSO workforce. Happy Thanksgiving to all!!

Anonymous said...

TSA propoganda machine begins...

Al Ames said...

Word is most of the Nude-o-Scopes were turned off so there wasn't anything to opt out of, Bob. Any truth to that?

And are these what people are actually reporting, or is this TSA handing out time cards halfway thru the line to make the stats look better (yes, that has happened ...)

Given the fact that less scans and patdowns were happening, it's not much of a surprise that lines would move quicker. And planes weren't any less safe because of unnecessary! Imagine that!

Sounds to me TSA was really afraid of the backlash if flights were delayed ...

Al

The Voice said...

Not going to lie, I was freaked out when I went to the Austin airport this morning and saw the lines as long as they were. Nevertheless, I got through in less than half an hour and all the TSA staff I saw were incredibly polite and helpful. Thanks for doing such a great job!

Anonymous said...

We're living in a country full of sheep. Nothing new here. Move on.

Anonymous said...

It's really hard to opt-out when you're not selected. Reports are you guys opened a ton of extra metal detector lanes and significantly reduced the number of people being selected for AIT.

If this technology is so important for our security, why are you reducing its use on the day before Thanksgiving in response to a "bunch of people on the internet"? Shouldn't the TSA be concerning itself with security and not public opinion?

Or maybe it's that the machines are ineffective anyway....

Anonymous said...

Hmmm...I thought that pictures and videos at TSA checkpoints were illegal...

I guess if it's "pro-TSA" then it's ok.

Anonymous said...

"At or below normal levels." on one of the busiest travel days of the year?

Kind of says it all, doesn't it?

Anonymous said...

Congratulations for finally having one day of customer friendly service. Keep up the effort.

abelard said...

Wow. Talk about a whitewash.

Local news in Phoenix is reporting a "light" number of people traveling at Sky Harbor compared to last year. I surveyed the Southwest website and found I could pretty much take any flight to any destination today as tickets were available. Last year, I couldn't even change my simple flight from Phoenix to the L.A. area because all flights were sold out.

Of course the lines are short: more people chose not to fly or are driving or taking the train.

Anonymous said...

Hey Bob,

If I get a couple cute kids holding a sign saying: "Thank you TSA for eroding my 4th Amendment rights in a pointless security theater" will you put that on on the blog?

Jack Doyle said...

"AIT opt outs total 26 for the day so far, out of an estimated 47,000 passengers to be screened today"

Are you telling me you've sent 47,000 people through the AIT machine and only 26 have opted out? That is pretty impressive.

Bryce said...

There have been rumors that the AIT machines at many of these airports are not being used to scan passengers today. Can you confirm or deny?

Anonymous said...

has anyone thought about the fact that FEWER people might be flying as a result of this new policy?

Anonymous said...

Gotta Love TSA's propaganda.

Your friend, Ethel said...

That picture, Bob, is a sad comment on what our country has become.

And BTW, are they children of TSO's?

Anonymous said...

What is going on in the background of that picture?

Joshua said...

At LaGuardia, "No passengers opting out of a pat down." I'm not too surprised, given that "National Opt Out Day" was about opting out of full body scans in favor of the patdowns. If you opt out of a pat down, you're not going to get on the plane, and you could get fined up to $11,000.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like more people are opting out of flying completely instead of opting out of just the scanners. Wait times are down... so is revenue for everything else associated with the airport.

Anonymous said...

May have wasted a WHOLE bunch of money on backscatter machines, but at least you spent good money on PR.

Wonder how much extra the TSA agent got paid for their family to pose for the photo OP.. My guess is none.

josh said...

You kind of forgot to mention that you turned off the AITs at some of the bigger airports. Can't opt-out if you are not requested to be scanned...

Anonymous said...

Any thought as to why wait times/line lengths are low? Is the travel volume the same as for a typical day-before-Thanksgiving?

William said...

Firstly, it is rather curious that there haven't been any comments posted on with respect to this posting. I can't imagine that every single post that was submitted either violated the comment policy, or did not meet the arbitrary criteria set forth in the first sentence of paragraph 2.

Secondly, whether one is in support of these policies or not, I find it enormously insulting that an employee of the TSA (or perhaps a contractor) is spending a moment of his or her time writing a post that is clearly designed to somehow effect public opinion on this issue. As far as I know, it is not the mission of the TSA to engage in such activities.

Thirdly, as this post does not indicate the details of the photo, I would ask that a subsequent post address whether or not permission was given by the parents of these children to have their picture used in this post, and whether or not they were aware of the contents of this post. As a contractor who works for the DoD, I can say that without said permission, the TSA may be in violation of any number of laws or executive guidelines that are designed to not only protect the privacy of individuals, but their safety as well when it comes to controversial issues such as this.

Anonymous said...

I'm calling shenanigans on the opt numbers

Anonymous said...

This isn't the end. You've drawn the line and the American people will do something. You've made your choice how far you're willing to go, now we will make our choice how far we're going to push back.

Anonymous said...

CLT: Charlotte Douglas Internatinoal airport.
Passenger throughput has been constant and wait times at a minimum. Passengers seem to be be better prepared for processing through the checkpoints. There is a greater wait time for parking and traffic around the airport than at the checkpoints.

ChrisC said...

"excellent" (in best Montgomery Burns voice)

Anonymous said...

New Orleans International has wait times at or below normal levels.

Anonymous said...

What about O'Hare, or other airports that use backscatter?

Anonymous said...

Myself and 4 others opted out in Denver this morning yet you're saying there were no opt outs?

There were 5 before 9am!

At least you're consistent in lying through your teeth. The wait time was about 25 minutes also, not that it matters to you.

txrus said...

The LA Times is reporting that, at least in the US Air terminal @ LAX, the scanners were NOT in operation. One presumes this had something to do w/the assertion that checkpoint lines were 'moving briskly'.

The logical follow-up to this, then, is of all those airports referenced in this post who claim they have no lines, how many turned their scanners off, too?

And why, when we have been hearing non-stop for more than a week now how VITAL these machines are to 'keep us safe' would they be turned OFF on the 'busiest travel day of the year'?

Could it be because of expected media attention?

Anonymous said...

One word Bob, one word. Pathetic

Anonymous said...

A new low, Even for you Bob

Anonymous said...

Reports are pretty much universale that most airports have their backscatter machines turned off today. Clever way to report "no opt-outs", Blogger Bob.

Mike said...

Respectfully, much of the information contained in this post seems like an effort to discredit so-called "Opt-Out" advocates.

It's not clear to me how blogging on coffee shop wait times and listing selectively chosen numbers of "opt-outs" that seem to advance an agenda is an appropriate use of government employee time.

I would personally prefer the TSA public relations staff focus on directly actionable information, like current wait times, and leave editorializing to their personal time.

Anonymous said...

I would like to draw your attention to the concept of confirmation bias. Perhaps as a reaction to all of the ire raised by these issues, TSA agents were especially warned to be professional and respectful, thereby reducing the number of complaints and issues.

The idea that 'people care about safety more than they care about freedom' is supported by the observed outcome, but the origin of that outcome is not clear.

Additionally, while I understand that opting out is a large inconvenience, exposing oneself and one's children to radiation is not safe, ever.

Anonymous said...

Why won't a government site publish comments of the citizens who comment?

Anonymous said...

I guess we can all assume that the either the wait times are long or there are other issues at the airports that don't make your report.

LD said...

Why does the TSA take on this defensive position? It's very off-putting. You don't "win" if people don't opt-out today. It's not a contest or a game.

Anonymous said...

Hey Bob, here's another study to advertise on your front page... bet you won't do it...

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/money_co/2010/11/new-poll-says-61-oppose-new-airport-security-measures.html

Anonymous said...

I wonder how much ice cream the TSA had to bribe the two kids in the picture with to get them to hold up the TSA supplied sign..!!..?

Anonymous said...

Why did you send my hot girlfriend through the Backscatter scanner along with every single female in line at LAX, but all guys, including me were sent through the normal metal detector?

Disgusting.

Anonymous said...

Sweet sign. Which TSA guy made it and gave it to the kids?

serp said...

Pictures of children that have been told to be grateful for something they don't fully understand aren't going to make Americans suddenly happy about what's going on at airports. These new procedures have no place in this country, so give up the charade. Quit trying to prolong this with propaganda.

Anonymous said...

Amazing that you can't opt out of something that they aren't actually doing. It's like running with the title NEWSFLASH! MILLIONS OF 100% AMERICANS CHOOSE NOT TO VOTE TODAY on a day where there is no election.

elektronic said...

Wait times are below normal? That must mean either:

1 - No one is flying

-OR-

2 - TSA modified their screening procedures today.

Anonymous said...

It's a bust, except for the small fact that was left out about most of the scanners are currently shut off (NUMEROUS reports on Twitter.) http://gizmodo.com/5698536/fliers-claim-tsa-have-deactivated-body-scanners

spin, spin, spin. People are smarter and more resourceful than you give them credit for. I'm pretty sure this won't get posted either.

Anonymous said...

So who actually made the poster? I highly doubt two teenagers would thank the TSA of their own accord.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the propaganda.

Anonymous said...

Bob,

Nice pick.

Thanks for once again showing us that when you want to, you can post pictures and video quickly.

And thanks also for providing more proof that when you don't move quickly, there is an ulterior motive.

Anonymous said...

hearing that the backscatter machines are turned off at many airports. That would reduce the number of people "opting out".

Anonymous said...

Bob-

Any comment on the multiple reports by travelers that the backscatter machines at many of the busiest airports are not in use today and whether or not that's contributing the expedient screenings?

Anonymous said...

Thanks for doing the right thing, scanners in the off position and a minimum number of pat-dows .... and still security!

Frank said...

Hey guys. I heard someone say that you had turned off most of the X-ray scanners for the day and weren't doing pat downs? Is that true?

Eric Watterson said...

Thanks for turning off the nude photo machines at so many airports. I applaud the TSA for finally recognizing how badly they misjudged their recent incursion into Americans privacy.

Anonymous said...

So, you give precise number of those who opted-out, but you give generic screening numbers.

How many people were required to be scanned with the machines and/or patted down?

There are rumors circulating that all you did was turn off most of the machines to make the OPT-OUT day seem to fizzle.

Anonymous said...

Hey Bob. . . airport by airport, how about some data of number of pax selected to get WBI, number of opt outs, number of scanners in operation. That's a start.

Anonymous said...

Bob,

What e-mail address can the rest of us use to send you security related photos?

Anonymous said...

Liar. You changed protocol today.

Anonymous said...

i don't see anything about chicago, but i came in through the delta checkpoint and it was literally a 2 person line...no worries here either

Daniel said...

Why are you publishing numbers od people who have opted out of the scanners? Is it because the TSA doesn't really believe that doing so is a legitimite act? Or is it to show that Opt Out Day is a failure? Has it occurred to you that perhaps the reason that everything is going so smoothly today is that people have opted out of flying altogether, just as proponents of Opt Out Day have been calling for?

The picture of the two girls with the sign is a non-sequiter. They don't know a thing about aviation security and have no evidence that the TSA is keeping them safe. Perhaps you would care to name some of the terrorists who have been caught by the TSA? Oh, wait, there are none. There is also mounting evidence that the TSA is causing deaths, through additional exposure to radiation, forever minute the doses may be, and through encouraging people to drive rather than fly, where their chances of being killed are much higher.

I find it absurd that the TSA publishes only the media which makes them look good, particularly when there is such an overwhelming collection of media which shows that the TSA is ill required to deal with their simple mission. This blog is a joke. This post hasn't violated any of your rules, so I look forward to reading it under the comments section very soon.

Anonymous said...

So, they've rounded up lots of folks who say, "We love Big Brother." This blog would be more credible if it was 1) honest and 2) acknowledged screw ups and 3) acted with more humility toward the American people.

Anonymous said...

Hey, Kids! Hold this sign! What does it say? Oh, don't worry about that. Smile! Ok, go get patted down.

Anonymous said...

TSM, been here... said...

"People really need to get over themselves and the American sense of "entitlement" that most of our citizens seem to have."

****************************************

LOL!!! You redefine Constitutional Rights as "entitlement"? Double plus good!!!

Anonymous said...

Bob,

How many of the scanners were turned off? A friend texted me to say that all scanners were turned off ag ORD.. :rolleyes:

Nina said...

Above all the opinions and observations, I'm disappointed with the sarcasm, vague threats and angry language. This is the marketplace. I would so appreciate a little more civility across this debate.
--Nina

Curt said...

First of all- thanks for shutting off the machines, as evidenced by these tweets collected by Gizmodo- http://gizmodo.com/5698536/fliers-claim-tsa-have-deactivated-body-scanners.
Second- to all of you saying it is worth being groped to be protected: Patrick Henry said "Give me liberty or give me death!" The TSA says "Terrorists might give you death, so give us your liberty."

Anonymous said...

Why don't you post that the Whole Body Imaging machines were actually turned off, and everyone was using the Walk Through Metal Detector?

Also, is it possible that the TSA changed their gropings to normal pat downs temporarily? Will the TSA go back to gropings after opt-out day is over?

Anonymous said...

Local news were saying that the waits were consistently around 20 minutes here. Funny you didn't mention this major airport in your report.

Also, the parents who are using their kids to push their agendas are disgusting. It's obvious that those children didn't create that sign. I cannot believe that they, and the TSA, are exploiting their underage kids in the name of propaganda.

- Me (who chose not to fly this Thanksgiving because of the TSA)

Anonymous said...

Thank you TSA for pretending to provide safety for my family!

Anonymous said...

Plenty of reports out there, Bob, about the fact that the machines are off or roped off, and that the searches are different than just one day ago.

And passenger load today is lighter than last year, too. I don't see any reference to that little fact, despite it being available in the media.

I hate coming on here and being such a crank, but these posts are simply disingenuous. I know what I experienced, and for some reason, the TSA has changed everything today. You can post all you want, but it's not going to alleviate my terror that the TSA will just amp it back up as soon as the families are done travelling and us regular flyers are going to be subjected to this all over again.

I guess I'll stop beating my dead horse now and let you get back to your regularly scheduled one-sided reporting.

TSORon said...

Brown Sugar Babies asked...
I'm allergic to latex - what are the provisions in case of a pat down ... also...how frequently do they change their gloves. Diseases can be transmitted topically. The gloves protect them, but not us. Thank you in advance for your response.

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

TSA does not use latex gloves for this very reason. To many people are alergic to it. We use Nitrile gloves, no latex.

We change them at odd times, each TSO is different. But you are more than welcome to request that a TSO change their gloves at any time, its one of the things that we are happy to do for passengers.

Have a great holiday weekend!

CP TSO said...

Folks, the AIT's have been open and running all day long. Its the "Opt-outs" that have not been happening. No more than usual anywhere in the country. Even the guy that startedf this "National Opt-Out Day" has chosen not to participate, that should tell you quite a bit.

Anonymous said...

I call cheats on the TSA. I went through the airport in DFW and there weren't even any AIT's open. This is why no one's opting out. The TSA is skewing the numbers to make themselves look better.

Anonymous said...

Whole Body Imaging is important for National Security!!.. except on Opt-Out Day.

Anonymous said...

What a useless post. We already know you're going to downplay any protest. (And, really, posting wait times for Harrisburg? Yeah, big airport with long security lines...no.)

The real conundrum: On the one hand, TSA claims that whole-body scanners are absolutely necessary for our safety. On the other hand, plenty of airports still don't have them. If it's that essential, isn't it grossly negligent to allow anyone to fly out of PDX or one of the many other airports that don't have them?

Of course it's not grossly negligent; the scanners are useless. Put them into storage and try to work on, say, getting your screeners to stop yelling and shouting. If you're going to put us through your song-and-dance routine you could at least try to turn down the volume.

Anonymous said...

Yesterday, I cancelled my flight home for the holiday. I called Southwest to do so and let them know that while they are my favorite airline and I enjoy doing business with them, the TSA's new policies have made it preferable for me to stay home.

The gentleman I spoke with was very kind and understanding and said that they'd had a number of similar requests. I thanked him and said I hoped I'd be able to do business with them again in the future, if the TSA's policy changes.

I will not be spending Thanksgiving with my family this year, but I feel better knowing that I've put my money where my mouth is. (Or, rather, taken it away.)

Jack Doyle said...

Just to correct a couple of people... pictures and video at checkpoints is not illegal.

Also, the $11,000 fine is apparently not the case anymore. If you opt out, you are asked to leave. If you approach the checkpoint again they'll shut it down and treat you as a terrorist.

Anonymous said...

Does this "smooth" process take into account that there may not be as many people flying this holiday season because of the TSA? Please respond to the reports that these machines are shut down and roped off.

For the wholebody imaging machines that are on, does the traveler know what they actually do? Are they informed?

Anonymous said...

"What is going on in the background of that picture?"

A man is being subject to unsafe and untested technology with radiation (Backscatter x-ray). There might be something about 4th amendment violations here too.

Anonymous said...

TSA remains the biggest threat to the American people. This threat is much more serious than any terrorist threat. TSA is using all power of the state trying to kill the spirit of freedom in American people, treating them as animals. I do not think that such protection is needed for us.

Anonymous said...

Ha! Sounds more like you lowered security today to reduce "opt-outs." Funny I don't see the new polls with lower approval of the scanners. One has 61% disapproval. And how many people did the TSA actually keep safe today? Find anything today that you wouldn't have found with the previous security measures like those dangerous water bottles? Didn't think so. Do you realize it is more likely that someone will get cancer from one of your machines than be a victim of a terrorist attack on a plane? More likely to be a lightning strike victim as well. And it is also more likely that the plane will crash for other reasons or that they'll be killed in a car crash when they arrive. Wouldn't that be a shame if they gave up their 4th amendment right only to be killed by a more likely event. Isn't that what the terrorists demand? For Americans to give up their freedoms which they hate? Good job TSA! Although we all know last year's attempted attack is being used to justify huge spending to make Rapiscan rich with our taxpayer money. We already are victims.

Anonymous said...

As "safe" as you guys at the TSA are keeping us, you turned off your backscatter machines and halted the advanced groping.

Ever caught a terrorist? We should remember that the underwear bomber was already on the plane when he was caught by passengers.

Nice try, TSA.

Anonymous said...

I feel like I'm reading a Russian newspaper or a damage report from BP. "Nothing to see here, move along; everything is fine."

Anonymous said...

Those girls look suspicious. Who brings a sign kissing up to the TSA? They should be "randomly selected" for an enhanced pat-down. Instead there was conveniently a TSO with a camera. hmmmmm.....

Anonymous said...

TSA tactic for dealing with opt-out day: Surrender, then publicly declare victory.

Well, sorry, TSA, but for me, every day is opt-out day.

Anonymous said...

That doesn't look like a child's handwriting on the poster and those kids look pretty confused about being photographed. Way to hand some kids a sign and declare victory. No one is fooled by this propaganda.

Anonymous said...

Interesting handwriting on the sign in the photo - wonder who wrote it? Certainly not those girls.

National Opt-Out Day was a complete success, because it got the TSA to shut down the scanners. Don't think this will go away on Monday, either.

NYCchris said...

I call shenanigans.

Had the scanners ACTUALLY been on when I flew out of LGA Tuesday night, you'd have a better idea of how many people wouldn't go through them.

I was wearing a sports bra and cycling shorts under my regular clothing, and was ready to strip if I got pulled aside for extra screening.

Anonymous said...

Flew today. The reasons lines are short is because they turned off the scanners. I thought they were necessary for security? ;)

chris bray said...

Burlington, VT: "That’s it? That’s all there is to it? Why is the media making such a big deal?"

Give it five more years. "Man, the random house to house searches are no big deal at all -- the state security agents were very polite! Why did the news media make a big deal about this?"

Acculturation. This is a "you can't go back" event.

Anonymous said...

Times were probably faster because of people like me, who have vowed not to fly again until the TSA is compelled to comply with the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution.

It looks like my choices at the airport are to have a nude photo taken of me, to be sexually assaulted by a government agent, or to be fined or arrested if I refuse the former two. I'll be driving, thanks.

Anonymous said...

Americans are idiots. Terrorism has won.

Anonymous said...

I fly clt twice each week. Wait times TODAYSHORTER than usual. First time in weeks all bag xray lines open. ALL AIT li es closed.

Anonymous said...

TSA critics sure are sore losers!!!

Anonymous said...

I really don't think it is appropriate to post children holding a sign to support your agency's 4th amendment violations.

Anonymous said...

The photo is exploitative and manipulative. It is propaganda of the lowest form. At least post an adult holding a sign, who might truly understand what is written on it. Maybe an adult who is struggling to explain that why in every part of their children's lives they are taught not to let strangers touch them in a way that suddenly the government is allowed to?

Anonymous said...

Our founders knew quite well that the government could justify an entire host of indignities using security as an argument. They warned us against them, but time and time again in our history, we forsake our principals in a nod to fear, be it, Native American removal, Japanese internment, or now ever widening persecution of our own people masquerading as security.

What is sad is that your agency doesn't even really provide real security, just the illusion of security. All you seem to do is react to the latest threats. The state of Israel, who deals with real terrorist threats daily, doesn't seem to feel the need to subject their citizens to these indignities on a daily basis in order to allow people to fly in and out of their country, and have been quite successful in defending their air travel network. Is the TSA so arrogant as to think there is no other way to provide security except to buy expensive machines from former security bureaucrats who now work for the manufacturers of the machines? The billions spent would be better applied in other areas. The TSA is a wasteful travesty, and a built on a legacy of fear, and I suspect corruption.

Anonymous said...

What Americans need is courage, the courage to face a very real threat without abandoning our freedoms and liberties in exchange for naked scans and body groping. We as a nation are keenly aware that terrorists are indeed truly out there seeking to do us damage, and that individual deaths are tragedies. What we need the courage to realize is that changing an entire nation's way of life to one of a totalitarian security regime is the greater tragedy. In one battle, over three days in 1863, at a place called Gettysburg, over 55,000 Americans died for a cause they called Freedom. Now, we as a nation would undermine that sacrifice for a few scraps of imagined protection.

The underwear bomber's own father reported him to the authorities over a month before he boarded a plane. The security state failed completely and miserably to stop him. Despite having 10,000 top secret security clearance holders for every known Al Qaeda terrorist, we can't seem to catch the guy whose own father warned us about. Because it is easier to frisk a granny and a three year old child's underwear in response, apparently we as a nation choose to do that instead of forcing agencies to recognize and respond to real threats. The TSA is a disgrace that is out there to cover for a bigger disgrace, a bloated and ineffective security state apparatus that is perfectly happy to fund its own existence with bigger and bigger bogey-men of fear at any cost.

I suppose given the real challenge, it is easier to post cute children holding signs to reassure yourself you are actually doing something worthwhile.

Anonymous said...

So the porn pic machines were off today? Are we going to keep it that way now? Maybe Pistole can sell them on the open market to Hugo Chavez or that nutcase in Iran. That's where you'd expect to see heavy-handed tactics like the TSA uses.

I think you Photoshopped the pic of the two girls. In the original pic that I saw, it said "Don't Touch Us There! We are Americans!". Hmmmm.

Anonymous said...

I hear today that if we even SAY that we are opposed to the naked body scans and molestation, that we will be labeled as "domestic terrorists" by the DHS. Am I in America? It would seem that we woke up in Orwell's "1984".

Anonymous said...

Curtis "blogger Bob"

I think you need to come clean and say who these kids are.

For little girls- they sure have the hand writing of an adult.....

Anonymous said...

You need to hire a public relations firm. There is absolutely no private company that would blog such obvious "I told you so" bragging propaganda to belittle its "customers". This is amateurish.

hoelty said...

Well you know, if you turn off the backscatter machines on National Opt-Out Day so that people don't have the option to opt-out, that's probably why.

Anonymous said...

This blog is awesome. Basically every single comment is negative. Props to everyone for not submitting to government propaganda!

Anonymous said...

So, can you confirm the many reports that the AIT machines were shut down to avoid the confrontation? Sounds about right. Maybe you can spin it, though. Spin seems to be your forte.

Anonymous said...

The only person at our aiport who asked to "opt out" was actually already finished with screening and had ben screened through the the "walk through metal detector" and NOT the scanner in the first place.So much fo rht emedia hype. The probelem is not the scanner, not the pat down and not passengers. It is clearly the media who jumps on anything that vaguely resembles a story, anything to grab headlines, make peole talk rudely about others and genuinely cause an uproar when there is nothing to uproar about, sending shockwaves is NOT news, reporting about real current events is. Talk about health care reform, talk about the war, the economics crashing all around the world but really airport security? People just like you and me that wnet out and got a job ( even of you don't like what they do) to pay their bills, keep tjeir families together, doing a job to keep your family safe and yet you beat them down talk about us all like we are all the same hmmm sounds like a type of racism to me. Yes there are bad officers, yes there are bad policeman, yes there are bad doctors and lawyers and strettcar operators but all in all out officers are trained and are only doing what they are told to do and most of them do it everyday with a smile and that is not easy when every day they are called "nazi's, pedophiles, etc. go to work one day and think of how it would feel to be never appreciated, insulted and not respected we are here to do the job we are hired to do, you do yours and we will do our with pride and integrity and we will pray that we never have to lose another person in a airline terrorist attack we will do out paet to see that does not happen.

Jake said...

Pravda.

If you don't get my point check wikipedia.

This kind of propaganda disgusts me.

Bring back the 4th amendment.

Anonymous said...

Oceania is at war with Eastasia. Oceania has always been at war with Eastasia.

Anonymous said...

Ok, odd question.....

No security delays on a major Holiday ? Is this the twilight zone ...... or did the higher ups bring everyone in to work the gates ..... And if you have no delays on the biggest travel day of the year, I ask why cant you do that on a Monday morning ? ie I think some people are getting lots of overtime in an attempt to play things down :P

If not, hey TSA higher ups, bring all these people in everyday . Itwould be nice not to have to wait an hour to get thru security on a Wednesday afternoon in the middle of February...

Anonymous said...

"I think you Photoshopped the pic of the two girls. In the original pic that I saw, it said 'Don't Touch Us There! We are Americans!'. Hmmmm."

If this is true, please post it everywhere you can. Thanks

Anonymous said...

anon said:
"TSA propoganda machine begins..."

and so does the bloggers...

unfortunately no matter how good or bad the tsa does it will always be viewed as bad on the blog, a real shame. al-qaeda has won, its turned the american public against the govt not the tsa. the actions of al-qaeda have caused these changes in security NOT the govt. they are winning by having americans turn against the govt. THINK ABOUT IT!!!! take yourself out of your little world and look at the BIG picture! taking out the WTC buildings werent about the buildings themselves but what they stood for, capitalism. WAKE UP PEOPLE!!!! you are doing exactly what they want!

Anonymous said...

so if you posted a picture of the actual images you see in the scanners of children; do you think people would be praising you?
There is no danger, when you add in multiple metal detectors, and dogs, and do your jobs for once, it wouldn't happen.

But of course, I've personally seen the TSA allow a man with a full case of razor blades through with no problem. Remember, 9-11 weapons were razor blades..no so much guns.
Prepare for full on civil lawsuits.

Ayn R. Key said...

So you are bragging that you turned off the Nude-O-Scopes, thereby preventing people from opting out by not opting them in?

By the way, where did you get that disgusting posed picture and how much did you pay the models to pretend to like the TSA?

RB said...

Bob, the picture you posted of the 3 kids with the sign praising TSA, would you state for the record that those kids showed up at an airport without any prompting from anyone with ties to TSA, either an employee, family member or such?

Anonymous said...

with the spinzone that goes on in here by the bloggers i woulndt be suprised if ayn and rb are actually tsa people that are on here to get a rise out of the other people. you 2 are proof that al-qaeda is winning by getting the public to turn on the govt.
if this is posted then im sure it will be asked why it wasnt deleted, yet rb is stating how many post are being deleted by the unconstitutional tsa blog. its a no win for the tsa once again.

Anonymous said...

think about this, perhaps al-qaeda is trying to get americans to use another form of transportation other than airplanes because of the the security that is in place. they use our rights against us to get people to travel by train or bus where the targets become easier because of the lack of checks. so now there is an oppertunity to attack because the american public is reacting to all the negative publicity against the tsa. it is a known fact that al-qaeda is targeting non "traditional" looking muslims to preform the bombings now. think about it!

TSM West said...

Brown Sugar Babies said...
I'm allergic to latex - what are the provisions in case of a pat down ... also...how frequently do they change their gloves. Diseases can be transmitted topically. The gloves protect them, but not us. Thank you in advance for your response.

November 24, 2010 12:29 PM
-----------------------------------
TSA has employees who are allergic to latex also. Because of this we keep non-latex gloves on hand. TSO are required to change their gloves after every pat down.

Hope this helps

B.C. said...

You guys failed to mention that there was almost no one at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport compared to previous "day-before-Thanksgiving's" in the past.

I was there. The wait time was so low because there was hardly anyone there for the busiest travel day of the year! That's what you call "opting out". Opting out of flying.

Anonymous said...

You guys failed to mention that there was almost no one at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport compared to previous "day-before-Thanksgiving's" in the past.

I was there. The wait time was so low because there was hardly anyone there for the busiest travel day of the year! That's what you call "opting out". Opting out of flying.

Anonymous said...

Yes, and the TSA completely turned off the x-rated x-ray scanners just so they could defuse the "opt-out" day for the media covering the newly made holiday and make it look like the security lines were moving quickly and that there was literally no action in terms of people "opting out" and going for patdowns. The TSA also failed to mention that. And since no airplanes were hijacked or in danger during the BUSIEST day of the year while the scanners were turned off, I'd say that the scanners are completely unnecessary! Besides, Mythbusters Adam Savage got through a TSA scanner with twelve-inch razor blades. FAIL.

Anonymous said...

You realize there were two different responses by TSA moderators for the Latex question, right? The first stated TSO's change them "at any time" and the second stated TSO's are REQUIRED to change them after each pat down. So which is it? I thought the CDC required these glove reg's so you guys wouldn't be spreading diseases to people after groping personal areas.

Anonymous said...

"Blogger Bob posted: "Burlington, VT: Following a pat-down, one passenger commented, “That’s it? That’s all there is to it? Why is the media making such a big deal? I’ve received more invasive pat downs just going to a rock concert.”"

Bob - you forgot the rest of it: The passenger then added, "I'm happy to give up my Constitutional rights to people who smile and wear pretty uniforms. Where's the form I sign so that they can search my home anytime they want? No need to knock either - I have nothing to hide."

Time to get a third-party moderator for this taxpayer-funded blog.

TSM West said...

Anon said
You realize there were two different responses by TSA moderators for the Latex question, right? The first stated TSO's change them "at any time" and the second stated TSO's are REQUIRED to change them after each pat down. So which is it? I thought the CDC required these glove reg's so you guys wouldn't be spreading diseases to people after groping personal areas.

November 27, 2010 3:31 AM
-----------------------------------
I think if TSO Ron thinks about his answer he would realize that he misspoke. During screening of bags or any other screening process that does not involve touching passengers, TSO do not have to change their gloves unless asked to by the passenger. For patdowns they are required to change the gloves after every patdown.

Anonymous said...

Epic Fail TSA. I think by now the airlines are definitely seeing you as a major drain on their wallet.

Anonymous said...

anon said:
"Epic Fail TSA. I think by now the airlines are definitely seeing you as a major drain on their wallet."

and about 2 years ago the govt bailed them out so they were a major fund to their wallet...

Anonymous said...

Anon, do you have a link showing that the gov't bailed out the airlines 2 years ago, and which ones received money?

RB said...

RB said...
Bob, the picture you posted of the 2 kids with the sign praising TSA, would you state for the record that those kids showed up at an airport without any prompting from anyone with ties to TSA, either an employee, family member or such?

November 26, 2010 7:25 AM
..................
Bob, cat got your tongue?

Simple questions and a more simple answer.

Did TSA stage that photo op?

Blogger Bob said...

RB said... Simple questions and a more simple answer. Did TSA stage that photo op? December 2, 2010 9:55 AM

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

No.

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

Gaye said...

Hi, I have no issues with the pat down for it's necessary so please keep us as safe as you can while in the skies - - thank you!!

However, I do have issues being a tax paying citizen that keeps TSA in business as a government entity that they allow special lines for frequent flyers. Even though I'm a frequent flyer, why does a gov't entity segregate based on mileage. I simply do not understand this policy. If TSA is truly ran separately than the airlines then why does our federal government allow segregation of any type to occur? A traveler is a traveler and frequent mileage have nothing to do with security - - this is mutually exclusive. To me, this is a form of segregation at the taxpayers expense.

Anonymous said...

Could the short wait times have anything to do with not using the scanners on opt-out day?

http://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2010/12/full_body_scann.html

Anonymous said...

I HAVE A QUESTION. IF THE PASSENGER ACCEPTS THE BODY SCAN, DOES SAID PASSENGER HAVE TO SUBMIT TO A PAT DOWN, THE INVASIVE VERSION OR THE MORE REASONABLE ONE?
I HAVE BEEN SUBJECTED TO BOTH THE BODY SCAN AND THE REASONABLE PAT DOWN FOR THE SAME FLIGHT AND IT APPEARS TO ME THAT THAT IS OVER-KILL. I WOULD LIKE TO KNOW MY RIGHTS WHEN I FLY, IF I EVER DO AGAIN.

nirmal said...

My wife has Alzheimers disease

Is there a way to make it possible that even before getting in line, I could speak to a TSA officer on duty to ask a female inspector to privately in presence of spouse, do pat down & all that they want to do. This way passenger with disease does not create a scene in the line & cause a lot of confusion since simple command as "Take your boarding pass" or "take off your shoes " is not understood specially in a crowd & everyone in line behind starts yelling & upset which makes situation worse
Obviously she cannot have a sign saying Alzheimers like people who are on wheelchair or amputees are obviously disabled while infact she is more so than those
Any help from anyone will greatly be appreciated
Because of this We travel in Business class on international travel & local carriers locally but that does not help with TSA
Have written to TSA and am waiting for their response
Thank you

daniel said...

It's nice that you are taking time to refute articles from known satire news sources. Now if you would refute articles from known regular news sources...

Monte said...

Bob--

You are falling behind on responding to news reports about:
1.) scanners easily spoofed
2.) safety of scanners not demonstrated by independent researchers
3.) operational safety of scanners over time questioned

Particularly disconcerting are reports published today (12/21/10) that the organizations you cite to garner credibility (e.g., Johns-Hopkins, U.S. Army, many others) are publicly disavowing significant involvement or continuing engagement in this area with TSA.

Comments?

Anonymous said...

I know this report is false. I flew through RIC on this day and my wife and I both opted out. Someone is giving you the wrong information.