Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Screening of 6 Year-Old at MSY

 ***Update 4-13-2011 7:07 PM*** Welcome Drudge readers and anyone else who’s new to the TSA Blog. Seeing that many of you have never been here before, I wanted to provide links to a couple of posts we've written on pat-downs. They will give you a better idea of why pat-downs are used and when.
Also, please note that we’re receiving many more comments than usual thanks to the Drudge link, so please bear with us as this is a moderated blog.  Thanks!  ***
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A video taken of one of our officers patting down a six year-old has attracted quite a bit of attention. Some folks are asking if the proper procedures were followed. Yes. TSA has reviewed the incident and the security officer in the video followed the current standard operating procedures.

With that said,  you may have read recently that our Administrator is looking into ways to move past the cookie cutter approach to screening. Recognizing that terrorists are willing to manipulate societal norms to evade detection, TSA has been actively assessing less invasive screening methods for low-risk populations, such as younger passengers, while still maintaining a high level of security.

Also, you may have heard in the video that someone references a drug test.TSA does not test for drugs. It's possible those individuals are referring to the explosive trace detection test that can detect the smallest traces of explosives.

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

If you’d like to comment on an unrelated topic you can do so in our Off Topic Comments post. You can also view our blog post archives or search our blog to find a related topic to comment in. If you have a travel related issue or question that needs an immediate answer, you can contact a Customer Support Manager at the airport you traveled, or will be traveling through by using Talk to TSA.

Monday, April 4, 2011

TSA Welcomes Its 500th Puppy!

Dolan, TSA's 500th Pupp
Dolan, TSA's 500th Pupp
Meet Dolan, TSA's 500th puppy to be born into the TSA Puppy Program.  Each of the puppies are named after a 9/11 victim to honor their memory, and this puppy was named after Capt. Robert Edward Dolan Jr., who lost his life in the attack on the Pentagon.


Dolan was born at Lackland Air Force Base and if he meets our high standards will be trained by the TSA's National Explosives Detection Canine Team to become an explosives detection dog.  Puppies that don’t meet our standards are offered to other agencies or adopted by loving families. 

"My children and I are very excited to have a puppy named in Bob’s memory,” said Lisa Dolan, wife of the late Captain Dolan.  “Bob began his military career as an explosives ordnance expert.  When he was killed at the Pentagon, he was working on Homeland Defense, and so it's very fitting to have one of the TSA puppies named for our hero, Captain Bob Dolan.  Knowing “Puppy Dolan” will one day be an explosives detection canine in the service of our country is reassuring.  Dolan’s future career keeping travelers safe is a fitting addition to Bob’s legacy of freedom.”

The program has been in place for nine years and out of the 500 puppies, around half of them are currently working in the field, or have been selected as breeders.

Once the puppies are born into the program, they have to be fostered by volunteer families for up to a year prior to their training. If you live in the San Antonio or Austin area and are interested in fostering a puppy such as Dolan, TSA will provide all the food, equipment and veterinary care in exchange for providing a stimulating environment where the puppy can grow and develop.  Sound appealing? Want to take out a new “leash” on life? Go here and fill out the application (PDF).

Many potential foster families are "hounding" us to become part of the program, so “schnauzer” chance…  Be sure to apply now so you can be placed on a waiting list. 

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

If you’d like to comment on an unrelated topic you can do so in our Off Topic Comments post. You can also view our blog post archives or search our blog to find a related topic to comment in. If you have a travel related issue or question that needs an immediate answer, you can contact a Customer Support Manager at the airport you traveled, or will be traveling through by using Talk to TSA.

Friday, April 1, 2011

TSA Space Alien Detection Officers (ADO)

(Space Alien shown walking through metal detector)
(Space Alien shown walking through metal detector)
When you think you’ve covered all your bases, something new comes along. This time, it’s invisible! New intelligence suggests that space aliens with invisibility cloaks have been going through our checkpoints for years. We know they’ve been observing flight operations at some of our busiest airports, but we had no idea they were coming in.

It’s not entirely clear what their intentions are, but they need to be screened just like anybody else. We don’t mind space aliens visiting our airports. In fact we think it’s kind of cool. However, they need to go through security just like everybody else. They can’t just continue to stroll through security, especially if they have their shoes on or if they’re carrying liquids. Or even liquefying weapons... We can’t get into all the details of how we know these aliens are transiting the checkpoint, but one thing we noticed is an uptick in suggestions that Goloxtinizer be added to our "Can I Bring" tool. Who knew... Even space aliens use our app.

Some experts think they possibly prefer first class commercial travel as opposed to their own spacecraft which is speculated to have a cramped and cold environment. Other experts speculate they have an affinity for airport food. Some have claimed that the prices are out of this world…

Whatever their motivation is, rest assured that  a new layer of security has been developed that will allow us to detect and screen these unique passengers. This new layer is our TSA Alien Detection Officer (ADO). ADOs are an elite new type of officer who has undergone unique training to use specially developed detection tools. You may have already seen some of these tools in use at airports and just not known what they were. 

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

If you’d like to comment on an unrelated topic you can do so in our Off Topic Comments post. You can also view our blog post archives or search our blog to find a related topic to comment in. If you have a travel related issue or question that needs an immediate answer, you can contact a Customer Support Manager at the airport you traveled, or will be traveling through by using Talk to TSA.