Friday, May 4, 2012

TSA Week in Review: Plastic Dagger Found With Body Scanner


Plastic dagger, spear gun, inert grenades, axe, knives, infectious substance.
Plastic Dagger Found With Body Scanner – A passenger at DTW had a plastic dagger hidden in the hemline of her shirt. This is an example of the body scanner showing its strength by finding non-metallic weapons.

Knife Mounted on Walker
Knife Mounted on Walker: Yes, the kind of walker that assists one with walking... Usually, the only attachments you see on walkers are tennis balls, but this one had a knife mounted on the front. Just another example of why we take a closer look at even the most common of items. Great job to the Officers at New York's JFK.

Tomahawk – Denver (DEN) Officers discovered a tomahawk in a carry-on bag. Not a Tomahawk missile, but a bladed projectile.

Replica Grenades and Mines –It’s been another busy week for grenades and mines. Inert grenades were discovered by Officers at Tampa (TPA) and Savannah (SAV). Training Claymore mines complete with shrapnel were discovered at Newark (EWR). You would think that these items would be a rare find, but apparently that’s not the case. I know I’ve said it over and over, but for anybody who may be new to reading this post, we realize that replicas are totally harmless, however, we don’t know that until we’ve gone through all of the motions. Read here and here for more information on why inert items cause problems at checkpoints.

Biohazard – You can imagine the look on the Officer’s face in Austin (AUS) when they discovered a label on a package that read “Class 6 Biohazard.” After Police and Austin Fire responded, they learned the item was a water and borax solution.

Spearguns are Prohibited – I remember when I used to train TSOs. They would laugh when I mentioned Spearguns while going over prohibited items. They couldn’t believe that anybody would actually try to bring one on a plane. Well…in addition to all of the other ones we’ve found, the latest was discovered at Raleigh-Durham (RDU).

Officers at Salt Lake City (SLC) and LaGuardia (LGA) found a total of three throwing stars.
Throwing Stars – Your Kung Fu is no match for our Officers. With a few acrobatic moves and defensive measures, Officers at Salt Lake City (SLC) and LaGuardia (LGA) found a total of three throwing stars. Good job, grasshoppers.
People Say the Darndest Things - Here are examples of what not to say at the airport. Statements like these not only delay the people who said them but can also inconvenience lots of other passengers if the checkpoint has to be evacuated:  

  • While waiting in line to be screened at St. Louis (STL) a passenger nodded to another unidentified passenger, and stated to a TSO, “You better check this guy good, he has explosives.” 
  • A passenger within earshot of our Behavior Detection Officers at Tucson (TUS) stated: “I did not want you to notice the bomb in my shoe.”
Miscellaneous Prohibited Items - In addition to all of the other prohibited items we find weekly, our Officers also found firearm components, realistic replica firearms, stun guns, brass knuckles, pepper spray, quite the assortment of knives, ammunition, and batons.

8 loaded firearms.
4 loaded firearms.
9 loaded firearms.
Firearms - Here are the firearms our Officers found in carry-on baggage since I posted last Friday.
23 firearms discovered. 22 were loaded.

You can travel with your firearms in checked baggage, but they must first be declared to the airline. You can go here for more details on how to properly travel with your firearms. Firearm possession laws vary by state and locality. Travelers should familiarize themselves with state and local firearm laws for each point of travel prior to departure

Unfortunately these sorts of occurrences are all too frequent which is why we talk about these finds. Sure, it’s great to share the things that our officers are finding, but at the same time, each time we find a dangerous item, the throughput is slowed down and a passenger that likely had no ill intent ends up with a citation or in some cases is even arrested. This is a friendly reminder to please leave these items at home. Just because we find a prohibited item on an individual does not mean they had bad intentions, that's for the law enforcement officer to decide. In many cases, people simply forgot they had these items.

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




85 comments:

Anonymous said...

>> Knife Mounted on Walker

The media outlets report that this happened at JFK, and not at EWR.

Regardless, this knife is a butter knife. Allow me to point you to the following page on your employer's web site --

http://apps.tsa.dhs.gov/mytsa/cib_results.aspx?search=butter+knife

"You may transport this item in carry-on baggage or in checked baggage."

In other words, a TSA screener STOLE a permitted item from a passenger.

This is not a great catch. This is outright theft by one of your employer's workers.

Will you be issuing a correction to your post, Mr. Burns?

Jim Huggins said...

And now, it's Part Two of the TSA Week In Review:

Better Late Than Never: TSA complied this week with a FOIA request for 87 pages of records dealing with passenger complaints. Of course, it took TSA four years to fulfill the request.

Everything's Bigger In Texas (Including Assault): Texas congressman Francisco Conseco claimed he was assaulted by a TSO during a pat-down.

Sauce for the Goose Isn't Allowed for the Gander: A woman in Ft. Myers felt her pat-down was excessive, and demonstrated by performing the same actions performed on her on a TSO. In response, she was arrested and charged with battery.

Respect Your Elders?: An elderly woman, after AIT screening at Washington Reagan, was loudly asked if she was wearing a sanitary napkin and told "there's an anomaly in the crotch area".

Anonymous said...

Seriously - you are bragging about finding a plastic knife?

There are *thousands* of more dangerous objects available past the security checkpoint.

I'm not impressed.

NateTheGreat said...

Fantastic job! This is an awesome post. There will always be haters in the world, but I'm happy that you guys find all of these catches!

Anonymous said...

OMG, you found a butter knife! Did you arrest the terrorist?

If you didn't, it proves you didn't think they were a threat, which proves the butter knife is also not a threat. You did arrest the person, right?

Anonymous said...

Bob, regarding that knife on the walker --

How is it any different than the cutlery passengers are served on-board in first class? Or are given in airport restaurants?

http://www.fodors.com/news/story_5370.html

The fact that nearly eleven years after the TSA's creation you are trumpeting a butter knife taped to a guy's walker as a great find of the week says all one needs to know about the agency.

Anonymous said...

Wow...the AIT scanner caught a plastic knife. I'm sure glad a billion dollars was spent to catch something besides drugs. Of course a knife isn't much of a threat with hardened cockpit doors and changed passenger attitudes towards hijackers.

Is that a butter knife taped to the walker? It sure looks like a butter knife. I thought butter knifes were permitted. Even if it is something slightly more substantial than a butter knife, how much of a threat is it when carried by someone with a walker?

Anonymous said...

Another week and another boasting list of items that could not conceivably be used to bring down a plane. This is pointless, unimpressive, and ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

That's right, Bob, another
l
o
n
g
post to push that embarrassing 'civil liberties' story down, down, down the page!

Plastic Dagger- not a threat to the plane

Replica Grenades and Mines- not a threat to the plane

Biohazard-...that wasn't. Y'all do know you can pick up "biohazard" stickers at many places, right? (You can also get "contact lens solution" stickers for your nitroglycerine bottles, too!) Maybe you should pay less attention to what it says, and more to what it is?

Spearguns ar eprohibited- but an elastic cord, a plastic tube, and a dowel are all allowed, Right?

three throwing stars- But CDs and DVDs are allowed, right? Crack one of those in to, and you have a sharp edge....

People Say the Darndest Things- Like, "you know… things that go BOOM"?

replica firearms- not a threat to the plane

brass knuckles- not a threat tot he plane (what're they gonna do, punch the plane in the solar plexus?)

And, of course, "Just because we find a prohibited item on an individual does not mean they had bad intentions"- If they don't have bad intentions, then it's perfectly safe to let them keep their 'prohibited items'. And if they have bad intentions, taking their water bottle and 3.5-ounce toothpaste won't stop them.

The TSA is a waste and should be shut down. Even Congressmen think so (http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0512/75896.html). Well, what do you expect when you grab a Congressman's 'resistance'?

Anonymous said...

Ok, so there was some sort of knife on the walker. BUT, it doesn't look hidden to me, or like someone was trying to sneak it through. Not a "great catch" to spot something that was already looking to be pretty much out in the open.

Still doesn't justify how the handicapped are treated at the airports.

Hey Bob and any other TSA person who can justify the treatment of the handicapped, what don't YOU go through as an undercover handicapped person at some of these airports, complete with braces or crutches or chairs, and then see if YOU can then justify what we all go through.

Or, act like someone who doesn't understand why they are being frisked like a criminal and no one wants to answer your questions and you are annoying them by asking. Then come back and tell us how great the TSA is.

Anonymous said...

I see a lot of anamosity towards the TSA. So what, if any, type of security system do you think should be.

Anonymous said...

Please explain how someone would use a dagger like that to hijack an airplane now that cockpit doors are locked.

Anonymous said...

is the TSA website out of date? Are butter knives no longer allowed?

That terrorist in the walker did the worst job ever concealing his butter knife. I hope he was tackled to the ground, beat mercilessly and arrested for attempting to bring an allowed item on board of an air craft.

kate keese said...

My name is KATE and I am responding to all the people who continue to blast away at the TSA workers for the job they are required to do. I don't care if all you found WAS a butter knife, I am glad that you continue to be diligent in the job you have to do. You are keeping air travel as safe as you possibly can for all of us. There may be some spoiled Americans who complain, but they are also Americans who have forgotten what happened on that fateful day of 9/11/2001. Keep up the good work!

GSOLTSO said...

The knife found on the walker is not a butter knife. The description as found here:

http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/prohibited/permitted-prohibited-items.shtm#4

Butter knives are described as round bladed (or plastic). This knife has a sharp point on it. This was a prohibited item per the regulations.

West
TSA Blog Team

Anonymous said...

"My name is KATE and I am responding to all the people who continue to blast away at the TSA workers for the job they are required to do. I don't care if all you found WAS a butter knife, I am glad that you continue to be diligent in the job you have to do. You are keeping air travel as safe as you possibly can for all of us. There may be some spoiled Americans who complain, but they are also Americans who have forgotten what happened on that fateful day of 9/11/2001. Keep up the good work!"

Hi KATE! I've never met someone who spelled their name WITH ALL CAPITAL LETTERS, but in any case, it's nice to meet YOU!

I happen to remember what happened on September 11. Perhaps you have forgotten. On September 11 hijackers used box-cutters to FORCE THEIR WAY INTO THE COCKPIT. Let me repeat that for you: they used box-cutters TO FORCE THEIR WAY INTO THE COCKPIT.

Since then, cockpit doors have been secured. As far as knives go, that solved the problem.

And since when is being concerned for your rights "spoiled?" Would you call the American colonists "spoiled" for complaining about taxation without representation? Would you, KATE?

Anonymous said...

Butter knives are described as round bladed (or plastic). This knife has a sharp point on it. This was a prohibited item per the regulations.

West


You imply that a plastic knife would have been okay. But the first item listed is "Plastic Dagger". And at the end of that paragraph, it mentions "non-metallic weapons".

So, are plastic knives allowed or not?

See what we mean about inconsistencies?

Oh, and I can take a CD or DVD, crack it in half, and have "a sharp point on it". But CDs and DVDs are allowed.

See what we mean about inconsistencies?

I can visit a restaurant in the 'secure' zone, and get a steak knife. (And don't try to claim the TSA tracks every single steak knife in every restaurant in every airport.)

See what we mean about inconsistencies?

Oh, and that metal walker frame? It's hollow tubes. It's be a simple matter to remove one tube, bend it until it breaks, and use the ragged/sharp end to cause harm. (http://stephiblog.files.wordpress.com/2010/09/condor-pipe-dagger2.jpg) Yet, the walker is allowed past.

See what we mean about inconsistencies?

The TSA stops SOME people ("that likely had no ill intent") from carrying SOME things that MIGHT cause harm, yet allows through plenty of things that can also cause harm.


Inconsistency. Look it up.

Anonymous said...

GSOLTSO said...
"Butter knives are described as round bladed (or plastic). This knife has a sharp point on it. This was a prohibited item per the regulations."

Because of course it's impossible to file a sharp point onto a butter knife once you are past security. Your rules assume terrorists are morons. It's all just a big show, you aren't protecting anyone.

Anonymous said...

kate keese said...
"There may be some spoiled Americans who complain, but they are also Americans who have forgotten what happened on that fateful day of 9/11/2001."

Perhaps you've forgotten what happens when the government is allowed to be all powerful and do what ever it wants. Do some research on Stalin for example. The founders of our country understood that there needs to be limits on what the government is allowed to do.

BDS said...

Former TSA Administrator Kip Hawley has been seen on the news recenty citing TSA succeses and failures. Kip Hawley recommended allowing items such as bats and knives to be carried onto aircraft. His premise is that the items are no longer a significant threat to the aircraft. Many people agree with him because post 9/11 aircraft cockpits are fitted with hardened steel doors.
Kip Hawley also told us that when he was the acting TSA administrator, he could not make the changes that he felt were needed. He told us that he did not have the power to allow these low-threat items becuase Congress mandated that they be prohibited.
Could you comment on this?

Anonymous said...

And once again, you prove that you did not find anyone who was a threat to airline safety.

Pathetic.

The "point" on that plastic butter knife was more of a slightly pointed curve. It was a butter knife, not a dagger. It was not concealed and was not a threat to airline safety.

Anonymous said...

How many guns do you guys estimate that you missed? Is it about 53, i.e., 70%?

I'd love to make the most accurate calculation, so kindly provide the latest numbers.

Anonymous said...

KATE,

Yes. I remember what happened on 9/11.

4 airliners were hijacked by terrorists using an instrument that they did not have to sneak pass security because it was allowed on airplanes at that time, and to their advantage, they had cockpit doors that were not hardened, and an entire country who were taught to remain compliant and unresistant as passengers during airline hijackings.

That all changed by the time the 4th airplane was hijacked and the passengers and crew of flight 93 fought the hijackers of that flight. America became more secure that quick--within hours.

Since then, cockpit doors were hardened, and that alone was the ONLY physical security change that was needed to make airlines safe. The passengers have done the rest. Since 9/11, not a single attempted in-air compromise of an airliner was foiled by the TSA. Not even by Air Marshals. Each incident was resolved by PASSENGERS.

Yes, I remember what happened on 9/11. I remember that it was an event that made Americans stronger. The acts of those terrorists alone sealed our security for all future hijackings.

If you want to believe that 9/11 left you helpless and having no choice but to submit to groin searches and surrenduring plastic knives, that's okay. It only means you are a sheep--the one who will cower in the back of the plane--and that is understandable. But there will always be enough sheepdog passengers on that same plane with you, and they will guarantee safety. NOT THE TSA.

Roger said...

Am I correct that this is the first time the TSA has found *anything* with a body scanner that would not have been found with a walk-through metal detector? So how much money has been spent to find this one plastic knife?

Adrian said...

Just returned from a weekend trip.

Left OAK, Terminal 2, Friday night. Anyone opting out of the WBI was allowed to simply pass through the metal detector with no further pat down or additional screening. The reason is that the line was backing up, as anyone unfortunate enough to enter the WBI was sent back for multiple screenings and/or subject to additional pat downs. I saw nobody get through the imager without issue.

In the terminal, while waiting at the gate, a passenger who had just bought a new bag at a shop asked at the Starbucks if they had a knife they could borrow to cut off the tags. The Starbucks employee happily handed the passenger a serrated knife with what I would estimate was a six-inch blade. It certainly ripped through the plastic ties on the new luggage without much effort.

On the return flight, from SNA early this afternoon, the security checkpoint line was the longest I'd ever waited in. When I finally got to the WBI, I opted out, and had to wait in another line, as there were already two other passengers who had opted out and were awaiting their pat downs.

This mini-queue of opt-outs created confusion. TSA employees repeatedly passed by us and asked why we were all there. We had to keep explaining that we were waiting for our pat downs.

Two more passengers arrived and requested an opt out. One TSA agent opened the metal detector line and allowed both of them to pass through that without further screening, while the rest of us continued to wait for our pat downs. By this point, our belongings were out of sight, far beyond where we opt-outs were being held.

This was the first time ever that choosing to opt out cost me more time than the people with me in line who submitted to the whole body imagers. On average, opting out is still far faster.

Anonymous said...

Hey KATE.....As I had relatives at 9/11 (towers and survived), I can't say that I will forget. However, I WILL continue to blast the TSA for what they are doing to us, and my relatives who were there feel just as I do.

So...next comment......or would you just like to remove your foot from your mouth now?

TCXO said...

Former TSA Administrator Kip Hawley has been seen on the news recenty citing TSA succeses and failures. Kip Hawley recommended allowing items such as bats and knives to be carried onto aircraft. His premise is that the items are no longer a significant threat to the aircraft. Many people agree with him because post 9/11 aircraft cockpits are fitted with hardened steel doors.

mens jewelry store wholesale said...

Kip Hawley also told us that when he was the acting TSA administrator, he could not make the changes that he felt were needed. He told us that he did not have the power to allow these low-threat items becuase Congress mandated that they be prohibited.

Fishstick said...

The knife found on the walker is work reporting because if someone was testing the system to find out if a) A knife could be hidden in a walker or b) A marginally disallowed knife would get through security. Remember the purpose of these entries is to inform those who would try to get things past security that they will fail.

Jim Huggins, thanks for the goose/gander story. At first glance it appeared better than it was. The arrest was for grabbing the TSO not giving them a pat down.

TSA, can we let knives go through, please, they are of little threat now.

Sandra said...

From Christopher Elliott today:

"At the same time, my government sources tell me the winds of change are blowing at the Department of Homeland Security. They say the TSA is preparing for an unspecified, system-wide reorganization that could represent the biggest restructuring of airport security since 9/11."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/christopher-elliott/is-the-tsa-worth-saving-p_b_1489915.html

Read the entire article. ;-)

screen shot

George said...

Another weekly post touting TSA "successes." It's very nice to know we're getting something for what the TSA is costing us (in time, liberty, and dignity as well as billions of dollars), regardless of whether any of the catches actually prevented a terrorist tragedy. The "successes" are impressive, but not impressive enough to distract us from the many failures the TSA refuses to address.

In particular, I'm still waiting for Bob's response to the baggage screening TSOs arrested for taking bribes to ignore drug-filled suitcases. The delay in posting that response can only suggest he and his bosses are having a difficult time finding the proper spin and deflection to make this very serious incident go away.

Even with Bob's world-class propaganda skills, I'm sure he's struggling mightily to to craft the right content-free evasion. This operation went on until one of the drug runners turned informant and brought in the FBI to make the arrests. The TSA either failed to notice it was going on, or else failed to take action against the operation or the employees. Either way, it's a systemic failure that I'm sure even Bob can't defend, excuse, or justify. If the TSA can't even stop its own screeners from running an organized crime operation in their own sterile area, how can anyone expect them to protect aviation from terrorist threats? Among the TSA's many PR disasters, this one is Category 5.

Of course, we can count on Bob to ignore the real problem. The drug smuggling is just the latest symptom of the TSA's longstanding and all-pervasive systemic failure. The TSA is a severely dysfunctional bureaucracy in which obsessive secrecy and complete lack of accountability allow all sorts of incompetence, abuse, waste, fraud, and even crime to go on. We see the incompetence and experience the abuse all too often at checkpoints; and we occasionally hear about failed audits and criminal activity like this. That's almost certainly just the non-secret tip of an iceberg submerged in an ocean of secrecy. But it's enough to undermine any possible confidence in the TSA's ability to fulfill its mission.

On the other hand, maybe Bob and his bosses concluded that the drug smuggling is so embarrassing and indefensible that the only possible response is to ignore it. So he floods the blog with posts touting the Office of Civil Rights and Liberties and the TSA Pre-check, and of course weekly "successes," in the hope of distracting us about the elephant in the room.

Sorry Bob, I'm not distracted. The FBI took care of the criminals, so you might as well tell us what the TSA plans to do to fix the systemic problems that allow all these incidents to keep occurring. I know we won't ever get a straight answer. But it's important to keep asking the question, at least to maintain the hope that someone in the TSA leadership will finally recognize that evasion and condescension are not an effective public relations strategy.

Anonymous said...

"Remember the purpose of these entries is to inform those who would try to get things past security that they will fail."

Nonsense. It is trivially easy to obtain a knife past security in any airport with a restaurant. The purpose of these entries is to create the false impression that air travel is under perpetual siege, by hyping items carried by forgetful or stupid people and pretending they're big catches and not routine events.

Jack said...

Love how you guys make a big deal about whether a round is chambered or not... as if it makes a gun any less or more dangerous.

As a matter of fact, a gun in the hands of a law-abiding citizen isn't dangerous at all.

With all of these guns you've found over the eleven years you've been in business, surely you can say you have found one person who posed a threat to aviation security, right?

Guess not.

Jack said...

Plastic knife? The restaurants inside the checkpoint give you a metal knife with your food.

What a joke.

RB said...

Sandra said...
From Christopher Elliott today:

"At the same time, my government sources tell me the winds of change are blowing at the Department of Homeland Security. They say the TSA is preparing for an unspecified, system-wide reorganization that could represent the biggest restructuring of airport security since 9/11."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/christopher-elliott/is-the-tsa-worth-saving-p_b_1489915.html

Read the entire article. ;-)

screen shot

May 7, 2012 12:42 PM
=============
Also at http://tsanewsblog.com/2837/news/is-the-tsa-worth-saving/

An interesting part of the story:

"The latest call for reform came this morning from Flight Wisdom, a popular airline blog that isn’t exactly known for taking extreme positions, at least when it comes to airport security. It demanded a makeover of the TSA and suggested that at the very least, Blogger Bob should lose his job. Flight Wisdom says the agency’s mouthpiece, who likes to crack an occasional joke online, isn’t that funny. It’s certainly not alone in that assessment."

Anonymous said...

yet again, Bob, you either inspected (hassling passengers) or confiscated a long list of items that are not a threat. bang up job. now can you arrest some people who have not committed crimes? oh, right, you cannot arrest, you can merely detain and make vague and false accusations which lead to arrest. can't wait for someone to take the time, effort, and expense to sue.

Wintermute said...

So, since everyone's claiming that the virtual strip search hasn't caught anything that pre-9/11 security would, you have to trumpet a plastic knife and call it a "dagger" to try to discredit your detractors? How, exactly, was that "dagger" a danger to the flight, seeing as A) the cockpit doors are hardened and B) had someone attempted to use it as a weapon mid-flight, they would have been taken down by other passengers. This "dagger" was not a threat, and could have been allowed through with zero harm.

This comment is on-topic and follows guidelines (unless there are secret ones). Please do not censor it.

Anonymous said...

Look at that knife, it is clearly sharp. Butter knives have rounded tips. But probably the elderly person has it for security and forgot it was there.

Company said...

I wonder why people would try to pass with such weapons, do they really intend to use them?I am happy that the security is so well trained and equipped with all devices in order to discover these dangerous weapons and take them!

Insulin Pump User said...

Bob...do you care to comment on this latest story?

http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/31025318/detail.html

Animas told me not to take my pump through the AIT scanners. It sounds like this girl was bullied into using the scanner. Also, they improperly dealt with her juice since it is a medical liquid for diabetics.

Us pump users have great choices. We can either use the scanners which can damage our pumps, or we can face an invasive patdown, or we can just not fly. You know the metal detectors usually work great for us pump users. My pump rarely sets them off and I'm still screened thoroughly.

screenshot taken

Anonymous said...

TSA breaks insulin pump: http://www.abc4.com/content/news/top_stories/story/TSA-diabetes-salt-lake-insulin-savannah/Az-QjubuEUeXMX7LAbC1Xw.cspx

Anonymous said...

You forgot to mention finding an insulin pump and destroying it.

Craig said...

Hi All, now whilst I'm not the TSA's number one fan and had to ensure queues at least four times a week as I fly, I must say that overall I've found the TSA to be broadly courteous and professional in an often thankless task. Sure, a few officers were abysmal in their attitude and behaviors but broadly they've been good.

So let's give them a break. We've all had bad experiences with them but they do an important job and if anyone here performs a 100% job performance, 100% of the time, over 50,000 employees, then I'd sure like to offer them a job. I'd be richer than Buffett.

TSA, keep up the hard work, think about treating us like people, with respect and courtesy, and we'll all get along fine.

Thanks for the hard work.

Anonymous said...

And now the TSA breaks a teenager's insulin pump with their thug behavior. Way to go TSA. I would expect nothing less.

Mr. Gel-pack said...

http://todaytravel.today.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/03/05/10582817-tsa-apologizes-to-humiliated-mom-for-breast-pump-gaffe?lite

Huh, here we are 3+ years later, with more than 18B$ and 2 billion person-hours down the drain after my wife's 13 oz of spoiled breast milk, and your screeners still aren't well trained or supervised well enough to deal with breast milk. Color me surprised.

Anonymous said...

It is unfortunate that Americans who "keep and bear arms" while traveling are regarded (by default) as criminals and terrorists. The elimination of the TSA should be a near term goal of our legislature. I can't tell that the TSA has ever accomplished anything provably positive. The official theft of guns, knives, and nail clippers from peaceful Americans, in combination with invasive abuses of privacy, and of course unofficial theft of iPads etc. have never actually stopped a terrorist, have they? Eliminate the TSA.

Anonymous said...

How many of these wouldn't have been detected with your nudie scanners?

Good job breaking a $10000 insulin pump

Disgusting...

http://www.abc4.com/content/news/state/story/TSA-diabetes-salt-lake-insulin-savannah/Az-QjubuEUeXMX7LAbC1Xw.cspx

Anonymous said...

How about a comment on this TSA disaster:

http://www.abc4.com/content/news/state/story/TSA-diabetes-salt-lake-insulin-
savannah/Az-QjubuEUeXMX7LAbC1Xw.cspx

Anonymous said...

Alrighty people. So you grip that TSA is bothering/harassing people, that there are inconcistancies, blah, blah, blah. Well, here is what you sound like. I don't want to be held accountable for your actions and if someone else does something (ie. harm attendants/passengers) you can play the blame game to TSA/Homeland Security because they no longer have agents in the airports.

On the inconsistancies...they are only human just like you and me. You can't tell me that you are absolutely perfect. And if you do I will call you liar! Nothing will be perfect and never will. We are HUMAN!

It is human nature to try and push the limits of rules. We all do it. We do it at work and at home. See how far it will bend til it breaks. So where do you draw the line? What if it was a bomb and they didn't look into it? What if that lady pulled the plastic knife out and hurt someone? Who would you blame?

And if you saw someone sitting in the seat next to you breaking their walker, breaking a CD, or building a bow and arrow you wouldn't do anything? It wouldn't look odd to you? Or are you so involved with yourselves and with your electronics to be paying attention to others? I know for sure that if there was someone doing that the agents/officers going around the airports would notice. Why you ask? That is their job! To keep you safe!

I will end with this...if you think you could do any better go apply for their jobs. They have to deal with rude and inconsiderate people. Are do you think you are better than those people whom are working to make a living and keep others safe. I take my hat off to those folks.

P.S. The knife found does have a slight point at the end of it! Take a look again. I noticed it from my cell phone!

Anonymous said...

TSA hates 16 year old girls and insulin pumps. Here is a link to a report that TSA refused requests of a pat-down and forced a girl to go through a body scanner that the manufacturer says is damaged. Of course TSA denies this happened since TSA can't do no
wrong. overheadbin.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/05/08/11604317-16-year-old-diabetic-blames-tsa-for-breaking-her-insulin-pump?lite

Hope those bills in congress get passed soon and TSA will just be a joke from the past.-RNO hawkins

RB said...

Bob, would TSA like to comment on just why millions of dollars of screening equipment is collecting dust in a Texas warehouse instead of being used in airports?

Is this an example of how TSA responsibly manages taxpayers assets?

Wintermute said...

Why does the TSA continues to censor comments? This is a blatant abuse of authority.

Anonymous said...

SLC. Insulin pump.

Screencapped.

Calladus said...

What, you're not going to display that dangerous diabetic pump too?

I though you would be proud of that.

Anonymous said...

OMG You all are seriously wasting your time on this. Who gives a poop. It's just an article. It makes no difference either way. I can't believe how much free time you all have to critize this matter. I thought someone would have a relevant comment, but found that I was wrong, that yall just like to complain. Get a life people, who cares.

Anonymous said...

it's time to call the FBI and file charges against John Pistole and Janet Napolitano for leading the equivalent of a MOB and Terrorist organization responsible for the Constitutional violation of Law Abiding American Citizens and for violating the Constitution of the United States. Charge John and Janet with Assault by Threat, Terrorist Acts, Assault, Racketeering, violating the RICO act, receiving bribes and kickbacks by companies that manufacture the scanners, etc etc

Anonymous said...

"Since then, cockpit doors were hardened, and that alone was the ONLY physical security change that was needed to make airlines safe."

Uh, what about the bombs that people can potentially bring on? Is that not a threat?
Don't be mad at your country for being pro-active, there was once trust but the terrorists on 9/11 ultimately blew it for all of us. Isn't it usually the case that that one person ruined it for everyone? Rules apply in schools and workplaces because somebody did something to cause that rule. It's just something that we have to live with. It takes what, 5 minutes or less to get through actual security not inluding wait time in lines? We should be glad. It's not like they want to "touch" you, it's part of the job!

Anonymous said...

I think it is funny that people write as if Bob is the one who found all those prohibited items. Maybe people don’t think you’re a blogger in the PR department Bob?
“yet again, Bob, you either inspected (hassling passengers) or confiscated a long list of items that are not a threat.” – Anonymous

Snap shot taken...

for some reason. Maybe, it’s because I like to reread what I have wrote.

Anonymous said...

Bob. This post makes the TSA look bad. Was that your intention?

Anonymous said...

Bob, it seems like you are bragging about finding what appears to be a plastic butter knife. This post only makes the TSA look bad. Was that your intention?

Anonymous said...

Good job on finding that knife! This great success should in no way be overshadowed by the fact that hundreds of metal steak knives can be "acquired" at any of the numerous restaurants that do business past the TSA checkpoints.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
"Uh, what about the bombs that people can potentially bring on? Is that not a threat?"

It's a threat, but the TSA isn't any help.

If someone just wants to kill people the TSA isn't going to stop them. They don't need to get on a plane to do that.

The only defense against suicide bombers is the intelligence services. You need to find these people *before* they have a bomb strapped to their body. Waiting until they show up at the airport is too late.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ May 9, 2:13 PM said...

OMG You all are seriously wasting your time on this. Who gives a poop. It's just an article. It makes no difference either way. I can't believe how much free time you all have to critize this matter. I thought someone would have a relevant comment, but found that I was wrong, that yall just like to complain. Get a life people, who cares.

----

Yet you're here spending your time insulting people for spending their time complaining? Is that really any better?

Anyways. Bob, why is the TSA <a href=" http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/10/baby-ordered-off-plane-for-being-on-no-fly-list_n_1505648.html>protecting us from terrorist babies again?</a> Whatever happened to "there are no children on the no fly list"?

Anonymous said...

Keeping our skies safe from the 18-month-old children: Go, TSA, Go!

I'm proud that the TSA is able to stop these people!

http://www.wpbf.com/news/south-florida/Baby-18-months-old-ordered-off-plane-at-Fort-Lauderdale-airport/-/8788880/13038550/-/fhxhp7/-/index.html

Wintermute said...

"Uh, what about the bombs that people can potentially bring on? Is that not a threat?
Don't be mad at your country for being pro-active, there was once trust but the terrorists on 9/11 ultimately blew it for all of us. Isn't it usually the case that that one person ruined it for everyone? Rules apply in schools and workplaces because somebody did something to cause that rule. It's just something that we have to live with. It takes what, 5 minutes or less to get through actual security not inluding wait time in lines? We should be glad. It's not like they want to "touch" you, it's part of the job!"

It's not the "5 minutes" it takes that's the problem. It's the unwarranted searches in clear violation of the fourth amendment that are the problem. And it's not mere "touching" when, in any other context, many of the "pat-downs" the TSA does would be considered sexual assault. We should not be "glad" when our rights are violated and we are assaulted in the name of "security." We should be furious. Some of us are.

(Comment follows proper guidelines. Due to widespread censorship by the TSA, screenshot has been taken)

RB said...

TSA is bragging about finding a plastic knife with the TSA Strip Search Machines but it seems they truly are untested and ineffective.


Congress: full-body airport scanners wouldn’t have caught underwear bomber

RB said...

Anonymous said...
Uh, what about the bombs that people can potentially bring on? Is that not a threat?
Don't be mad at your country for being pro-active, there was once trust but the terrorists on 9/11 ultimately blew it for all of us. Isn't it usually the case that that one person ruined it for everyone? Rules apply in schools and workplaces because somebody did something to cause that rule. It's just something that we have to live with. It takes what, 5 minutes or less to get through actual security not inluding wait time in lines? We should be glad. It's not like they want to "touch" you, it's part of the job!

May 9, 2012 5:49 PM

So much poppycock I don't know where to start.

OK, let's say a person has an underwear bomb. They are in one of the very crowded TSA checkpoint since TSA is so slow to process people. This bomber is discovered, you think they won't detonate the device right then and there? Still taking out many, many people. It is TSA's procedures that are putting us at risk.

There is no call for TSA to be touching our "resistance" or in normal language our genitals. None. TSA is so unprofessional they won't even own up to what they are doing. At least be honest about the screening process instead of trying to mask what it is that TSA is doing.

Any claim that screening only takes 5 minutes is nothing but a lie. The waiting in line for screening is part of the process and counts. I have been in lines that took 20 and 30 minutes just to reach the useless TDC since looking at ID the way TSA does it adds nothing to security.

The terrorist want you to be afraid to fly and accept the burden that TSA has placed on the traveler.

TSA makes the terrorists attacks successful.

Anonymous said...

"4 airliners were hijacked by terrorists using an instrument that they did not have to sneak pass security because it was allowed on airplanes at that time, and to their advantage, they had cockpit doors that were not hardened, and an entire country who were taught to remain compliant and unresistant as passengers during airline hijackings."

And don't forget the government's complicity with the "Coordinated Response" video that all flight crews saw every 12 months that strictly encouraged letting hijackers have control of the airplane because, at worst, all they wanted to do was make a political statement. After that, everyone got to go home.

So, yeah, Kate, the same people are now telling us they have it figured out.

I know better. *You* know better. Don't take the path of least resistance. Take the path of maximum courage and resolve.

Anonymous said...

"if you think you could do any better go apply for their jobs. They have to deal with rude and inconsiderate people. Are do you think you are better than those people whom are working to make a living and keep others safe. I take my hat off to those folks."

I'd be interested in helping make aircraft travel safe but I'm way too qualified to apply for a screener job. I worked my way through college and grad school and have an actual background in security. The TSA would not be interested in me. That's ok, though, I support another USG organization that's truly helping provide security.

GSOLTSO said...

Anon sez - "West

You imply that a plastic knife would have been okay. But the first item listed is "Plastic Dagger". And at the end of that paragraph, it mentions "non-metallic weapons".

So, are plastic knives allowed or not?

See what we mean about inconsistencies?"

The plastic knife was a dagger style (you can see several types of plastic knives that are not allowed on planes here : http://allknife.com/index/35/ ), not a plastic butter knife. The blade found on the walker was a sharp pointed, serrated blade. According to the current prohibited item regulations, these are not allowed through the checkpoint in carryon luggage or your person. These - http://www.aliexpress.com/product-gs/562389435-Disposable-plastic-knife-wholesalers.html
are examples of plastic butter knives.

Fishstick sez - "TSA, can we let knives go through, please, they are of little threat now."

While that would make things more convenient for passengers and the TSOs, currently the regulations do not allow it, sorry.

Another anon sez - "Bob, it seems like you are bragging about finding what appears to be a plastic butter knife. This post only makes the TSA look bad. Was that your intention?"

See the breakdown above please.

West
TSA Blog Team

Wintermute said...

Fishstick sez - "TSA, can we let knives go through, please, they are of little threat now."

GSOLTSO replies - "While that would make things more convenient for passengers and the TSOs, currently the regulations do not allow it, sorry."

Ummm... We KNOW that. I believe he's asking for that regulation to be changed, which I second. The reasons it won't be any time soon? A) bureaucracy makes it difficult to remove a rule once it's in place and B) then the TSA wouldn't have harmless knives to claim as "successes" on these catch-of-the-week posts.

(comment follows guidelines. due to widespread censorship by the TSA, screenshot has been taken. Sad that that's the best way to be sure a comment is approved)

Anonymous said...

So now AQAP has figured out how to bypass the hideously expensive and invasive AITs, what next?

If we all took a similar approach to our personal finances as TSA does to security, we'd be putting our retirement money into the lottery; the 170M to 1 chance of winning the lottery is better than the "random" checks TSA does.

Time to get smart about security and bring in professionals. There will be a place for screeners but we're going to need a better trained and more educated screener force. The only answer: Privatize.

(And in case you're thinking about the "contractors are inferior to civil servants" argument, bear in mind that most of the most highly classified buildings around the country use - you guessed it - private security firms, including those run by the intelligence community.

Anonymous said...

So now AQAP has figured out how to bypass the hideously expensive and invasive AITs, what next?

If we all took a similar approach to our personal finances as TSA does to security, we'd be putting our retirement money into the lottery; the 170M to 1 chance of winning the lottery is better than the "random" checks TSA does.

Time to get smart about security and bring in professionals. There will be a place for screeners but we're going to need a better trained and more educated screener force. The only answer: Privatize.

(And in case you're thinking about the "contractors are inferior to civil servants" argument, bear in mind that most of the most highly classified buildings around the country use - you guessed it - private security firms, including those run by the intelligence community.

Anonymous said...

""My name is KATE and I am responding to all the people who continue to blast away at the TSA workers for the job they are required to do. I don't care if all you found WAS a butter knife, I am glad that you continue to be diligent in the job you have to do. You are keeping air travel as safe as you possibly can for all of us. There may be some spoiled Americans who complain, but they are also Americans who have forgotten what happened on that fateful day of 9/11/2001. Keep up the good work!"

Hello, KATE. The problem is that the job TSA is "required" to do doesn't provide security, or certainly not the security we're paying for.

What we're getting from the TSA is an illusion of security - you should read the Congressional Report released in Nov 2011 to educate yourself.

The reason we haven't had a recurrence of the 9/11 attacks are; strengthened cockpit doors, much better awereness, deleting the government-mandated training that recommended compliance with hijacker demands, taking the fight to AQ and related groups overseas and better intelligence.

Note that in the recently uncovered plot on the Arabian Peninsula that the body scanners used by TSA would not have detected the device. Good intel work stopped that plot - and thank God it did - because TSA would not have been able to detect the device once it got to the US.

Anonymous said...

"mens jewelry store wholesale said...
Kip Hawley also told us that when he was the acting TSA administrator, he could not make the changes that he felt were needed. He told us that he did not have the power to allow these low-threat items becuase Congress mandated that they be prohibited."


No, that is not what he said. What he said was when he tried to make changes, "POLITICS" would intervene. POLITICS, as in the activities and personalities within an organization that are typically divisive. When he was referring to politics in this manner, he did not mean Congress alone and by themselves.

Verbatim, this is what he said:
"I wanted to reduce the amount of time that officers spent searching for low-risk objects, but politics intervened at every turn. Lighters were untouchable, having been banned by an act of Congress. And despite the radically reduced risk that knives and box cutters presented in the post-9/11 world, allowing them back on board was considered too emotionally charged for the American public." He then continues on giving further examples of political interference from entities who were NOT Congress such as trying to get a registered traveler program started and the decision to remove shoes and ban liquids.

So as he explains, his hands were tied with lighters because Congress has banned it. Why? Because Congress makes laws (that is what we refer to when we say "an act of Congress), and there is a Federal Law that prohibits lighters aboard aircraft, just like there is a Federal Law prohibiting loaded guns and incendiary devices. Hawley and the TSA cannot make policies that override federal laws.

But box cutters, taking off shoes, bottles of liquid, etc, etc were still "touchable" by him because there is no Federal Law prohibiting that, but POLITICS from the bureaucrats within his agency and passengers who are either under-informed or living in unjustified fear pushed back on those decisions.

Be careful how you read these things before spinning it back out.

Anonymous said...

RB said...

So much poppycock I don't know where to start.


So funny because when I read that post you were referring to, I thought the same thing. I wouldn't know where to start. I would have to do a sit down discussion to explain it to someone who believes that. So much information and changes have been involved over the last decade that I just could not explain it in a simple blog comment. A commentator who says that would have to have been asleep and missing all the information over the last 10 years.

Anonymous said...

Billions of dollars, thousands of invasive, demeaning, dehumanizing screenings that have been likened to rape this week by a very well known public figure, and you're excited because you found a pointy piece of plastic?

Anonymous said...

My junk was junked too...

http://www.breitbart.com/Breitbart-TV/2012/05/11/Geraldo-Details-TSA%20-Rape-Pat-Down-My-Junk%20Was-Junked

Anonymous said...

George said: "In particular, I'm still waiting for Bob's response to the baggage screening TSOs arrested for taking bribes to ignore drug-filled suitcases. The delay in posting that response can only suggest he and his bosses are having a difficult time finding the proper spin and deflection to make this very serious incident go away. "

Come on, George... I'm going to do Bob's job for him. In fact, this is standard DHS/TSA PR training for any airport security director now:

"The alleged acts of a few employees of the TSA should not reflect negatively upon the brave and proud job done by 50,000 blah de blah de blah..."

The problem is that since each day there are roughly 2-10 names added to the "negative" list of TSA screeners who are guilty of official misconduct, since 2001 we've had about 8,000-10,000 people fall on that side of the equation. So roughly speaking, please continue to ignore the 20% of the organization that is corrupt.

Joseph said...

Anonymous is obviously not aware of what a "butter knife" is. My guess is that he has lost a number of knives, as he like most people that bring things to airports that they should not have in a carry-on bag. A butter knife is NOT serrated!
For the benefit of others as well mistakenly call all table knives, a "butter knife" please educate yourself and read the following.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Butter_knife

If you continue to bring these serrated non-butter knives into your carry-on luggage, the cutlery manufacturers of the world will benefit due to your ignorance.

Anonymous said...

All I have to say is not to be mad at the people doing the job. They need to be employed and I bet they feel as uncomfortable doing patdowns just as much as you hate receiving them. After so many comments they receive of hatred, I can understand why they can be mean sometimes. Just like any normal human being, after putting up with the way people (passengers) treat them, like many of the people commenting here, it gets to you.

Anonymous said...

"George said: "In particular, I'm still waiting for Bob's response to the baggage screening TSOs arrested for taking bribes to ignore drug-filled suitcases. The delay in posting that response can only suggest he and his bosses are having a difficult time finding the proper spin and deflection to make this very serious incident go away. "

I'm quite sure the screener that allowed the suitcases through absolutely, positively verified that the suitcases contained drugs, correct? In other words, the screener could not have been told by those offering the bribe that drugs would be smuggled, only to have the smugglers move explosives disguised as drugs, correct?

Time to put real security in place and replace the TSA theater with real security administered by Constitution-observing professionals.

Screenshot.

Anonymous said...

If I agree to not be afraid of flying with a guy with a plastic dagger beside me, can I go through security that does not involve the whole body scanner or grope choice?

Anonymous said...

why is the tsa looking for guns? the cockpit doors are locked so guns are a problem, like water, knives, and everything else you look for.

Anonymous said...

"George said: "In particular, I'm still waiting for Bob's response to the baggage screening TSOs arrested for taking bribes to ignore drug-filled suitcases. The delay in posting that response can only suggest he and his bosses are having a difficult time finding the proper spin and deflection to make this very serious incident go away...."

Yeh...I'm still waiting for a response as well for the comment I made...a few times... after hearing on LOCAL news down in Florida (the time the new so called underware bomber was "caught" and it was announced), that the radiation had been TURNED UP on the scanners as a "precaution". I heard this not once, not twice but THREE different times on the news throughout the day, a few days before a trip I was taking.
Also, how TSA blocked me when trying to get through because something "showed up" on the damned scanner on my BARE ARM!!!!
Yet, no comment from TSA......