TSA blames you for longer lines at airport security checkpoints


WCMH (NBC,Columbus):

TSA blames you for longer lines at airport security checkpoints

WASHINGTON (WCMH/AP) — Facing a growing backlash over extremely long airport security lines, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson on Friday asked fliers “to be patient” as the government takes steps to get them onto planes more quickly.Travelers across the country have endured lengthy lines, some snaking up and down escalators, or through food courts, and into terminal lobbies. At some airports, lines during peak hours have topped 90 minutes. Airlines have reported holding planes at gates to wait for passengers to clear security.

Johnson said the government has a plan to deal with the lines but won’t neglect its duty to stop terrorists.
“Our job is to keep the American people safe,” Johnson told reporters at a news conference. “We’re not going to compromise aviation security in the face of this.”
The comments reflect a statement released earlier this week after long lines were reported at Newark, JFK and LaGuardia airport security checkpoints. When asked about those long lines, the TSA essentially blamed you in a press release, specifically passengers who bring too many carry-on items:
There are several factors that have caused checkpoint lines to take longer to screen passengers… including more people traveling with carry-on bags, in many cases bringing more than the airline industry standard of one carry-on bag and one personal item per traveler;
Passenger preparedness can have a significant impact on wait times at security checkpoints nationwide…Individuals who come to the TSA checkpoint unprepared for a trip can have a negative impact on the time it takes to complete the screening process.”
In response, some airport authorities are now threatening to dump the TSA and hire their own private security firms.
The Transportation Security Administration has fewer screeners and has tightened security procedures. Meanwhile, more people are flying. Airlines and the TSA have been warning customers to arrive at the airport two hours in advance, but with summer travel season approaching even that might not be enough.

Quit carrying luggage, dagnabbit!
Buy clothes when you arrive at your destination, just imagine how that will stimulate the economy.


I go through LGA a lot, and while they are woefully understaffed, there are always travelers who want to go through with multiple bags ,and they then stand there and try to figure out how to consolidate their items. Why do they do that?


How about fast lanes for those with no carry on, as in just a purse, briefcase, satchel, but no luggage?


Heard on the radio that O’Hare Airport recommends getting there 3 hours before your flight this summer. That’s pretty stunning.


TSA is nowhere near the German airport security. I missed my flight going from Frankfurt to Atlanta because of them. Super slow. Unlike TSA, they’re slow but competent.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, the Gulf State region’s airport security is super slack. Sometimes, I wonder how comes they never have any aviation incidents from there. I call them “inshallah” or God willing security. Maybe the sheiks or tribes are all well paid off.


I ran into that at LAS five years ago; it’s in no way new.

Welcome to the new normal.


I have only been on an airplane once and it was not a commercial airliner so perhaps I am not qualified to voice my opinion on the matter. That said, in my opinion, I would rather stand in line for a security screening for longer than become a victim of a terrorist attack during my flight.


One time, I flew from Chicago to London and London to Tokyo with a grooming kit that I didn’t pay all that to. When I went to fly out of Tokyo, the screening agents there found that I had scissors in that kit that I shouldn’t have been allowed to fly with period. TSA and the British equivalent missed it.

So, I’m not sure you should feel safer, but you will feel inconvenienced.


Much more alarming is when I flew once (and only once!) with Air Pakistan, when the captain made the stunning announcement:

We will be landing at Jinnah International Airport [Karachi] in thirty-five minutes, inshallah.

However strong my faith is I would rather trust the laws of aerodynamics and the good folk at Boeing, when it comes to landing safely…

On a different but related-to-security note, about 3 years ago I walked round the UN Building in NYC with a fruit knife in my handbag (I totally forgot it was there until much later in the day). Which on reflection is maybe alarming.

More to the point, I think a certain degree of security checks are predicated precisely on making one feel safer…even if in reality one isn’t. If one has had to wait 3 hours, logic might dictate, then you MUST be safe. Ha.

We are caught in a bind because a) obviously we want ourselves and each other all to be safe, and b) the various security agencies have both what amounts to a monopoly, and the power to guilt us all into accepting more or less whatever they demand, with the line that ‘well you want to be safe, right?’

Sometimes on reflection I would rather fly, inshallah, after all…


There are airports that “process people” more efficiently.

Are there better ways?





They even have competitions to see who does the best work.

Some places even contract out the security work.

TSA reports to the Executive Branch of government.

In November, you will have an opportunity to maybe choose a different executive branch head OR more of the same.



Guess what:

They even have a newsletter/magazine:


This is an article from a couple of years ago, but not much as changed:


This one is more recent:


Even more recent … 2916, in fact:



I cannot say security is that crazy in the U.S. airports. Nothing even close to London, Heathrow, not to speak of Tel-Aviv airport. :mad:


I’ve read too many articles by former TSA employees who talk about their opinion that what we have at our airports is more “security theatre” than security. Many efficiencies - to say nothing of heightened REAL security - could come about by the kind of “profiling” practiced abroad. But of course that would be politically incorrect. Better that we strip people in wheelchairs and probe colostomy bags and reach down children’s pants than do that.


Waaahhhhhh! Americans are notoriously spoiled. Read an follow the rules, help instead of hinder.


Why, back in my day, we had to wait 5 hours in line to get on a plane, in the snow, uphill, both ways, and then, we had to help the mechanic start the engines by spinning the propellers…and we we’re damn glad to do it.


I avoid London Heathrow like a plague. Of all European airports, my favorite is Zurich. Zurich is very modern and efficient.

Most Asian airports are excellent and helpful except Manila Ninoy. It is a laughingstock of Asia. The staffs are grumpy, unhelpful, and corrupted.


:thumbsup: most people don’t check bags anymore, so it’s faster than you might think!


In fact, I have flown to and from TLV; and while they have made security into an art form over there, they do it without chaotic lines nor treating customers like criminals as is often the case here.



Ah, yes!!

The good old days when you spun the props by hand.



Spinning the props by hand.

I remember it well.

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