Saturday, October 13, 2007

What's dangerous on an airplane?

TSA regularly changes the rules on what you're allowed to bring on planes. Like many, I find the rules bizarre and generally a waste of everyone's time.

On a recent trip to Chicago with my family, we realized after we arrived that we had several liquids/gels in our carry-on bags that weren't in the "one quart clear resealable bags" that are the pride and joy of airport screeners everywhere. But we didn't get stopped about them. So much for the scanning process.

More interestingly, the woman sitting behind me was carrying on a sports trophy - it was quite attractive, made of cast bronze. I'd guess it was 18 inches tall, and from the way she was holding it, probably weighed about 10 pounds. Lots of sharp edges all over that would make it a good weapon. You surely wouldn't be allowed to carry on a knife or scissors with an 18 inch blade.

As has been routinely pointed out, now that cockpit doors are armored, the danger from knives and scissors has been dramatically reduced, so the bronze figure was surely no danger. But we're still limited to 3 inch blades on scissors.

Maybe someday TSA will think about their regulations from a consumer perspective, instead of their current knee-jerk reactions to threats, which ignore the big picture. But I'm not holding my breath.


Blogger Mark O'Neill said...

I've noticed this too. This leads me to speculate that one of the reasons they require you to explicitly put the liquids into little clear plastic bags is because, otherwise, they would not know that you have liquids in your baggage.

10:18 AM  

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