Entries in TSA (5)


Delta Air Lines CEO Asks TSA Not to Allow Small Knives on Planes

Delta Airlines(ATLANTA) -- Reacting to the Transportation Security Administration’s recent decision to allow small knives back on planes, Delta Air Lines’ CEO Richard Anderson complained that the decision adds little value to passengers and increases safety risks.

In a letter addressed to TSA Administrator John Pistole, Anderson wrote that though the Atlanta-based carrier has a strong relationship with the TSA, he disagreed with the agency’s recent decision and shared the “legitimate concerns” of flight attendants.

“We continue to support a risk-based approach to security,” he wrote. “However, we must object to the agency decision to allow small knives in the aircraft cabin.”

Pistole said earlier this week at an aviation security conference in New York that the TSA will allow small pocket knives and certain sporting goods on planes.

The move came following a recommendation by a TSA working group that such items were not a security threat. The move will conform to international rules that currently allow the small knives and sporting goods.

In his letter, Anderson pointed out that small knives have been banned from commercial planes for the past 11 years, and argued there are more effective ways to streamline checkpoint flow.

The Flight Attendants Union Coalition, which represents the 90,000 flight attendants on carriers nationwide, has called the announcement allowing small knives “poor and shortsighted.”

The policy, which also allows items such as souvenir baseball bats and golf clubs on board aircrafts, is set to go into effect April 25.

Razor blades and box-cutters like those used by the 9/11 terrorists will still be banned.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Thanksgiving Travel Rush: Americans Brace for Holiday

Medioimages/Photodisc(NEW YORK) -- As the Thanksgiving travel season starts to heat up, there's a double threat to air travel on the West Coast.

First, airport workers are scheduled to demonstrate at Los Angeles International Friday afternoon, prompting warnings for passengers to give themselves a three-hour cushion at LAX and an extra 90 minutes in travel time.

And second, crippling rain in Oregon and Washington expected to delay Northwest flights.

But since these are not major domestic hubs, the ripple effect of bad weather there is unlikely to spread.

And there is good news for the rest of the country: Weather is on travelers' side for a change.

"If there were to be a storm in Chicago or the Northeast you could count on mass chaos, but it doesn't look like that's going to be the case at all," said Genevieve Shaw Brown, ABC News Travel & Lifestyle editor.

New 2012 holiday tricks for savvy travelers:

Some airlines will allow you to avoid the baggage counter by tagging and checking your own bag.

TSA has a new pre-check program this year. Sign up and you pass through a separate security line, with your laptop in your bag, and your shoes on your feet.

New smartphone apps monitor security lines, so you can know how much time you'll spend on them. You don't want to miscalculate; flights are full and re-booking will be a challenge.

"It's extremely important to know how much time you actually have to get to your gate so that you don't potentially miss your flight and get stuck at the airport for Thanksgiving," said Brown.

One final tip: Leave the cranberry sauce at home. Because of the TSA ban on liquids, your turkey is welcome but the cranberries are on the no-fly list.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Checkpoint Change: What Passengers Are Leaving Behind

Digital Vision/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- There was considerable change at the Transportation Security Administration last year.

To be exact, there was $409,085.56 in loose change left behind at security checkpoints by fliers. The figure was first reported by USA Today.

To put that in perspective, that’s enough quarters, dimes and pennies to purchase two full-body scanners, with some change leftover.

And in fact, the TSA tells ABC News that in 2005 Congress gave the agency permission to use unclaimed cash for security operations.

“TSA makes every effort to reunite passengers with items left at the checkpoint, however there are instances where loose change or other items are left behind and unclaimed,” the agency said in a statement.

“Unclaimed money, typically consisting of loose coins passengers remove from their pockets, is documented and turned into the TSA financial office,” it said.

New York’s JFK International Airport saw the biggest chunk of change left behind: $46,918.06, enough to buy a nice luxury car and drive to your destination.

The smallest haul came from American Samoa’s Pago Pago International Airport, where $5.51 was left behind, enough to pay for about 20 percent of your checked bag fee.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Show Me the Money! Cash In on Items Forgotten, Confiscated at Airports

Medioimages/Photodisc(WASHINGTON) -- It's a scene played out at airports across the country each day, the piece of luggage circling around and around the carousel, forgotten or left behind by a harried traveler.

And, with airport security at an all-time high, Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officials gather mounds and mounds of confiscated items each year, from lotions and perfumes to knives, bats and more.

So what happens to the contents of that suitcase left behind? Just who profits from the more than seven million items left behind at airports across the country each year?

The answer, it turns out, could be you!

ABC’s Good Morning America discovered the millions of dollars worth of merchandise left behind at airports each year is available to the public, at a huge discount.

Items left behind at airports are delivered to local surplus stores, where everyday Americans can buy them for a huge discount, often as much as 70 percent. Some states also post the deals online, meaning you don't even have to leave your home to rake in the savings.

A GMA tour of a surplus store in Texas, for example, found designer sunglasses that regularly sell for $300 on sale for $50. And a set a Tiffany's earrings that would retail for around $4,500 were on sale for around $750.

The deal-making is a win-win situation for states too: the money made in Pennsylvania surplus stores and online goes right back to the state.

"Since 2004, when we began participating in the program, we have brought over $700,000 back into the state," Troy Thompson of the Pennsylvania Department of General Services, told ABC News.

How can you cash in? Visit these sites to see where you can buy TSA-confiscated items in your state:

Budget Travel

Eyeflare Travel Info

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Airlines to Test Self-Tagging for Baggage, Could Save Them Money

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- American Airlines and Air Canada are reportedly in talks with the Transportation Security Administration to begin having passengers print their own baggage tags and attach them to their luggage.  The initiative would be tested at Boston's Logan Airport.  USA Today says Delta is in talks to conduct tests at another airport.  Passengers tag their own bags on many airlines in other countries, but in the U.S. it must be done by airline employees.

Officials say it would not compromise security because it would not change the way passengers or bags are screened. 

In addition to saving passengers time, it could save the airlines money.  It takes one step out of the process by which airline employees get you from the entrance of one airport to the exit of another.  That kind of streamlining means fewer airline agents would be needed overall.  USA Today says the airline industry employed 564,000 people in August, down 8.4 percent from August 2005.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

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