Airport Screeners Reveal Travelers’ Surly Side
Wall St Journal
June 10, 2010
New body-scanning machines have detected hidden weapons like ceramic knives and flagged illegal drugs. But they’ve also tested the patience—and vanity—of some passengers.
The Transportation Security Administration has rolled out 80 of the machines at 27 airports and so far received 600 comments regarding their use out of about 4 million passengers scanned. Not a lot, and many travelers say they have come to accept the electronic peek under their clothing. But with a goal of 450 body-scanners on line by the end of the year, more travelers will likely be surprised by the sometimes uncomfortable procedures.
Mike Murdock, who travels on two to three flights per week, one morning in May was ordered to put his belt and other belongings through the baggage X-ray machine and step into a body-scanning machine at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. He normally leaves his belt on and keeps his wallet in his pocket when he goes through a metal detector.
When Mr. Murdock tried repeatedly to hold up his pants, he says a screener kept barking at him to keep his hands over his head, prisoner-style. That way the machine could get clear pictures of the whole body.
This article was posted: Thursday, June 10, 2010 at 4:18 am