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Liquids, Part 1 (Commenting Disabled)

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Thursday, January 31, 2008
Liquids cover 70% of the earth and they also make up a good percentage of our comments from the traveling public. Post all of your suggestions and concerns about liquids in this blog post. Refresh your knowledge of traveling with liquids .

So, how much damage could a liquid explosive cause? See for yourself from the Myth Busters page on

» Click here to see our video (wmv, streaming).


Submitted by Voicekey on

There have been bombings in Tokyo and London trains. I don't have to stop taking my water there because of it.

Address the real issues and acknowledge that 80% of TSA policies are there to make people feel good and not actually solve any problems.

Submitted by Anonymous on

To respond to the anonymous poster above, who is
"amazed of the ignorance and hostility passengers have against TSA screeners in particular. It is clear to me that many of the passengers would rather jeopardize security than to give away their peony tube of tooth paste. To all those people who complain about the policies that are enforced by the very government you voted for I hope you don't end up in a precarious situation fifty thousand feet in the air with a crazy person holding a small hand made IED (and we all know what that means)."

It personally amazes me that some people refuse to employ logic in their arguments. The above is example of such.
1. The whole issue surrounds whether liquids are a security threat or not. Further, an issue is whether or not stealing liquids does anything to improve security. Therefore, your commnet is moot, as it does not prove that possessing liquids on a plane is in fact a security threat, and therefore bears no relationship to people wishing to jeopardize security.

2. It is questionable whether or not the government we voted for is in charge. A democracy is auditable. The computer vote that we have is not. Therefore, did our votes count? Who knows.

3. You attempt to false associate liquids on board with a "crazy person holding an IED". How do you make such a leap of faith? Have there ever been ANY examples of someone bringing liquid on a plane and turning it into an IED? Have there been any examples of something even attempting this, other than the "foiled plot" that was proven to be a scam (link was posted earlier above)?

Personally, I'd feel safer if anyone could bring whatever they wanted on board. I'd like to see a terrorist trying to take over a plane when everyone on board could be packing.

Submitted by Anonymous on

I think you should show the most recent comments first, and allow people to reply to specific comments.

Submitted by Anonymous on

SO, It's probably been said many times over, but the whole limiting of liquids is a bit ridiculous. The logic is so non-existent that it is almost laughable...

Do you really think that three or four or more terrorists couldn't put together their little bits to make a larger bit that could go "Poof"? Sorry... tried to put that in terms that even the TSA could understand...

Come on guys... lets at least make rules that make sense. I'm all for safety and screening, but ludicrous rules like this one are what really make you all look rather silly and ineffectual.

Submitted by Anonymous on

I don't understand why you do not allow parents to bring bottles filled with water for their 11 month old baby's formula. The employee I spoke with about this explained that we could bring liquid formula on the plane, so basically if he had poured the powdered formula into the bottle of water we could have brought it on the plane, but we could not bring the water on the plane by itself. He did not seem to know that once you have poured powdered formula into a bottle of water you must use it within one hour or else it must be refrigerated. This tactic certainly would not work for us as we were embarking on a 7 hour flight. What is even more intriguing is that the night before we brought the exact same bottles through security, but no one said a word to us (we forgot to take them out of the diaper bag). However, our flight was cancelled and when we returned the next day and remembered to declare them for inspection, they required us to pour them out. This inconsistency in policy is not acceptable. Additionally, the unyielding policy against liquids for parents who clearly have no other choice (unless they want to pay $4 for a bottle of water once they get past security) is unacceptable. And truthfully, if you're going to require parents to buy water on the other side of security, then you need to speak with the vendors, which have a monopoly on bottled water at the airport, and require them to charge a lower price for bottled water.

Submitted by Anonymous on

The TSA should return the control of Airport security to the private airlines. The government is not anywhere near efficient enough to secure anything. The TSA must be eliminated if Americans are ever to be safe. All you do is mess up security and allow terrorists onto our planes or delay flights by screening people who are of no risk and wasting precious tax payer dollars to confiscate liquids that could not possibly be a security threat. The TSA does not make sense and does not make anybody safer. Do the sensible thing and let the private airlines handle security. They will do it the correct way.

Submitted by Stu_54 on

(The hard part about rule making is in the corner cases...)

Kitchen experiments indicate that a standard toothpaste tube is labeled 4.6 oz by weight, but it displaces 112 ml of water making it 3.75 oz by volume. (Stick tube in glass, fill to brim, remove tube, measure how much water is required to refill to brim.)

Your 3-1-1 rule sheet says that the limit is 3 oz by volume, so this tube is probably too big. (It might be ok after accounting for the volume of the package and included air.) It's a close call, and there is no labeling on the package to say either way.

If 3oz by volume is the right limit, then how do you prevent penalizing a container labeled by weight?

Submitted by Toby on

Hey Mr. Anonymous who posted at 5:05 PM Feb. 2, why don't you even tell your first name if you're so big on telling everybody else off?

You know what I've noticed? Most of the pro-TSA comments that don't come from the MODs are from anonymous posters. Almost all of my posts are censored.

Things that make you go "Hmmmm."

By the way, why would I trust the word of "anonymous" on his/her knowledge of explosives? I seriously care more about my liberty than about whether I may end up in a tough situation sometime in my life. Because I am an adult I realize that life will have tough situations no matter how much I live in fear and try to minimize all risk.

The TSA employees are responsible parties because they could quit their jobs and go to work in the private sector. "I was just following orders" does not exempt one from guilt.

Furthermore, it's "puny," not "peony."

Submitted by Anonymous on

I see you have disabled posting in some of your negative topic forums.

Your agents are consistently rude and lack empathy for the traveler. We are no longer able to securely travel with any checked baggage, since items are often stolen, confiscated, or damaged. Your checkpoint employees do not exercise any common sense in their judgment of situations. Frequently I have observed checkpoint agents carrying personal conversations while ignoring travelers.
If you give your employees more frequent breaks, raise the qualifications for hiring screeners, & raise the pay grades for checkpoint employees you would improve the quality of service. Effective business management starts with effective oversight of employees.
Sadly it seems that you either have no internal oversight & personal accountability, or you choose to act on complaints. I have seen no improvement in your business practices over the past 3 years. If any private company were as poorly managed and completely ineffective it would be shuttered within a matter of days.

Submitted by Snoopyto on

Why cna't TSA have a consistent policy across the board on stuff. I take an injectable Forteo. It has been kept refriegerated. However everytime I fly back from this one airport, they tell me that unless I inject it to prove it, that it has to be checked. The 1st and 2nd time, I had a doubel dose of medicine. Now I just plan on it. No sense in fighting it. THere should be some way to get appropiate waivers for items or to report inconsitencies that are truly looked into and explained to the passenger.

Submitted by Bloggulator on

Ask any appropriately qualified chemist about what is involved with making binary liquid explosives: it requires a lot of equipment (some of it bulky), glassware, care and expertise, as well as the correct ingredients. From scratch, it also takes many hours to successfully synthesize enough triacetone triperoxide for example, to successfully cause an explosion large enough to jeopardize a commercial airliner. Furthermore, the huge majority of flights are not in the air long enough to even get *any* amount of explosive made and dried, let alone enough with which to make a bomb. The ingredients for such are very specific, and the idea of making a bomb from toothpaste, shampoo and other common toiletries is *ABSURD BEYOND ALL REASON*.

Just consider the odds of a potential terrorist hauling all that glassware and other sundry laboratory equipment (as well as many kilos of ice as a necessary cooling agent) on board a commercial flight without anyone noticing! This is even before he started the lab processes! This scenario, if it wasn't so sad that so many people unconditionally believe such garbage dispensed by the government, is comedic.

There is ZERO chance of anyone successfully making (let alone detonating) a bomb made from "binary liquid explosives" on a commercial plane. It cannot be done. The powers that be are using the complicit mainstream media to scare (read *TERRORIZE*) the public, yet again. A frightened public are more easily manipulated and hoodwinked than an educated public, hence all the lies.

I hope that whoever reads this (if uncensored) will have less stress during their traveling experience.

Submitted by CHARLES on

To water drinker. and both state you should have been able to bring the water on board after a screening of the item....My wife had the same thing happen to her when we flew in July. She has MS and needs to drink lots of fluids. I showed the TSA guy who took issue,print outs of both TSA website sections and he said my information was incorrect.I knew he was wrong and after a few mins and him finally figuring out we were not going to back down let her through. I do not know why some (not all) TSA employess act the way they act. Common sense should have told him instantly he wasn't going to win this 1 and it should never have become an issue....Remember TSA people, "There are civilians out there that know the TSA guidelines word for word and you can't trick them".

Submitted by Annoyed on

Terrorist Ramzi Yousef used a bottle of saline solution (the bottle actually contained liquid nitrogen) on Phillipines Airline flight 434. He assembled the bomb in the airplane bathroom, and left it under his seat with a timing device. He then got off the plane at the next stop. The IED exploded killing one person. For all you people wanting more evidence that liquid explosives are a threat, do some research, you will find your evidence. Though I don't really think you want to find any evidence. YOU are still INCONVENIENCED! What do you care if a liquid explosive has previously killed someone, it wasn't anyone you knew, right?

Submitted by Anonymous on

Liquid explosives are very volatile, so the attackers would not necessarily need elaborate or powerful detonators to start the explosion. Without as much material to smuggle on board, the attackers would be less likely to attract the attention of airport security. In the case of the August 2006 plot, unnamed officials speculated that the attackers planned to use cell phones or MP3 players as detonators.

Smuggling a liquid onto an airplane would not be very difficult. The attackers may have planned to use ordinary bottles made for hair gel, shampoo, lotion or other liquids and gels. Under typical circumstances, airport security probably would not question items like these.
Check out these links for more on nitroglycerin and liquid explosives:

How Bombs Work
How Building Implosions Work

MSNBC: Bombers likely hoped to maximize terror
Liquid Explosives: Easily Concealed and Deadly
Scientific American: What Was the Explosive? Why Liquid Explosives May Be Al-Quada's Secret Weapon
General Chemistry Online: Why is Nitroglycerin Explosive? Nitrite Explosives
Britannica: Nitroglycerin

Submitted by Anonymous on

To Toby : By reading your reply, is it safe to assume that you will be first in line to bash our troops when they come home from Iraq? They are, after all, just doing their jobs! You may want to take a risk with your life, but there are plenty of people out there who don't! That is why there needs to be airport security, to secure those who want to travel safely.

Submitted by QuickOKC on

The American public has it so easy. For the majority of flying American's the experience and movement through most checkpoints is quick and painless. For those who do their homework and visit, remember that you too play a part in the screening process. Your preparation plays a critical roll. Americans should also be aware that other countries, more than 32 other countries are falling into rank and file with the 3-1-1 rule. In America, you are offered a chance to check your belongings, voluntarily discard them, hand them off to someone outside waiting to see you off, or take them back to your vehicle. In other countries there is no option, the things you had are thrown away without a second thought and you are ordered to move along, all the while under watchful eye and guard of armed security/police/military forces (non-US). Just pack your bags accordingly, it's that easy. So when you are asked if you've flown since August 10th, 2006 and you answer yes... Be prepared for the "[...] so you are aware of the liquids, gels, and aerosols requirements [...]?"

Submitted by Toby on

RE: Anonymous at 10:29 PM

I have never bashed anybody. One of my best friends is in the Air Force and stayed with me last weekend. I have a great many friends in the Armed Forces. They are sincere people. Some of them will tell me privately that hold an opinion similar to my own on the War on Terror, but would not be comfortable making that public.

I am comfortable risking my life. There is not other way to live as best as I can tell. There's not a "safe mode" for life that exempts one from all possible harm.

I am comfortable in restraining my desire to coerce others by force into accepting my ideas of what is good for them.

It's not about safety. It's about whether or not you should have the power to tell me how to live my life and then tax more for it.

I DO NOT OPPOSE AIRPORT/AIRPLANE SECURITY! I oppose government-mandated, taxpayer-funded security that is imposed on all airlines, airports, and passengers.

I oppose the growth of the power of the state to coerce and to tax.

Our Founding Fathers were more afraid of the terrorism of big government than anything else. I agree with them.

I support a limited government that is almost to the letter that which Patrick Henry supported. Call me crazy, but I'd just rather be in Mr. Henry's camp than not.

In a free market the airlines could advertise various levels of security and individuals could choose to fly according to their comfort level. The government could mandate that all cockpits be essentially impenetrable so that a plane could not be used as a weapon, thereby avoiding another 9/11.

Tell me what would be wrong with that? Why would it be so horrible if free people chose for themselves?

You would be free to choose a high-security airline for reasons that are none of my business and I would applaud you in your choice. I would be free to choose the cheapo-bailing-wire-and-duct-tape Redneck Express where the only security was that all of us bring our huntin' rifles on board with us. I suspect my entire family would choose that airline just for the company and in-flight conversation. :-)

Seriously, you expressed some opinions about me in your post that you could have cleared up by emailing me directly since my profile is available by clicking on my name. You could even have read my blog and found out more from there.

My beef is that you (meaning those who supported legislation creating the TSA) have imposed your will on me. You have taxed me for it. You have also slandered me because I don't like it and am willing to say it out loud.

By the way, Mr. Anonymous, I am actually proud of what I believe and unafraid to put my name to my post.

Submitted by Anonymous on

My husband and I travel a lot. I have found ways around the liquid policy: carry an empty water bottle and fill it at the airport's fountain after passing security. Frankly, if the liquid policy gets more people to check their bags, it is a plus. We loved it after 9/11 when no carryons were allowed at all. It was a breeze to load passengers on the plane. Now it is a nightmare again with all the fighting for overhead space. And old ladies carrying bags they cannot lift, expecting someone else to break their backs for them.

On the other hand, I fail to understand why a gas cartridge for my hair curling iron is safer in the iron than loose. London's Heathrow acted as if I were a terrorist just having the curling iron at all.

I have had an interesting experience for the last year with TSA and the quart bag issue. In LAX, I had a bad experience with my checked cosmetic bag as I was transferring on an international flight. Either United or TSA opened it and could not get it shut so it was sent down the chute at baggage claim with all the contents thrown all over. I then decided to carry it on for my final flight in the US but had no plastic bag. United kindly gave me a bag provided by LAX itself with its logo on it and a nice handle - very handy for getting out of my carryon. However, it turns out it is slightly bigger than the standard qt bag so, while most airports have let me go with it (I always make sure it is not full and carry an extra qt bag just in case), Las Vegas TSA had a cow about it. Getting all huffy about how lax LAX clearly is, etc. Most TSA agents who even notice think it is cool and wish their airport handed them out too. I contacted LAX about the fact that the bag was oversized and some PR person actually denied LAX had them made! Claimed they were for some other purpose, did not have the name on them, etc. Too weird, just like all life post 9/11.

Submitted by Anonymous on

I understand that if they took the few moments to check everyones liquids the time to pass security would increase. My question is how close are they checking. I was flying and because of the below freezing temp here took my larger bottles in to work with the plan I was going to put them in my suitcase prior to flying. It the rush I forgot and they got left in my carry on. They were not caught and I forgot about them till I got to my hotel. That worried me more than have to have them checked. How could they have been missed? What else are they missing?

Submitted by Anonymous on

I had the worst experience regarding "allowed" liquids traveling through the Hartford airport. I fly at least twice a month and am therefore very familiar with all TSA policies. I also have a 5 month old baby. When traveling through BDL, I was told that I had too much baby formula (4 bottles and a little extra). First of all, that amount, for my child, is reasonable. Second, who is the young, immature TSA screener to tell me what is reasonable in her mind for the needs of my son? Third, there is no hard and fast rule about the number of bottles or the ounces of formula that can be brought on board a plane. Without knowing my final destination or total travel time (I could be headed to Europe or something), how could she insist that I discard some formula (which happens to be the most expensive type)? How dare you! I think that's a gross misuse of the nature of the rule and an error in the application of it. After speaking with a supervisor and a few tears, I was allowed to proceed, but let me tell you, that's a hassle that no mother should have to go through. I guess what bothered me the most (to the point of blogging) was the screeners attitude and obvious disregard for my situation. Just because you work for the TSA, it doesn't give you license to make others miserable, especially over the nutrition for my child. I think the TSA needs to tell their screeners to use common sense and good judgment when it comes to baby items and not cause people undue stress or hardship.


Submitted by Anonymous on

I would like to note on the passengers complaint to the 3-1-1 rule it is 3.4 oz or 100 ml allowed not 3 they announce 3 for passengers to remember more easily globally; all tsa employees know this, and to others who say well you could mix several small sized container on an airplane well this might be true but if you saw someone mixing enough small containers I believe there would be quite the suspicion going on?! TRAVEL SIZE IS TRAVEL SIZE FOR A REASON AND MORE THEN NOT THE AIRLINE ALLOW BAGS THAT ARE OVER SIZED TO BE CARRIED ON THE AIRPLANE AS CARRY ON BAGGAGE WHEN THESE ITEMS SHOULD BE CHECK! Also for water there is land side and airside and the opportunity to refill your water on the airside without purchase ie. waterfountains, or soda fountains that carry water that is filtered is available to passengers upon request. Also note for passengers asking why tsa does not test every toothpaste or water bottle or shampoo if you think lines are long now when every single container must be tested per passenger or weighed for those who complain about 1 oz being left in their 5 container fail to realize how much time is added to that process time=money and would significantly add to operating costs About 3mn per passenger times 2,000 passengers pershift would require quite the additional help then what is already there which is already underpowered due to finances.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Please come up with something other than plastic bags. The TSA adding more plastic to a world that is overwhelmed on land and sea with plastic bags sends a message that our government is not paying attention to the effects of plastic. There should be a frequent traveller container that could be used or just put them in its own plastic container we already use. Try to think on a "green" level at the same time your working on a safe level

Submitted by Anonymous on

Funny how the liquids that are treated as potentially dangerous are all just tossed into a garbage can near the screening area. Ever paid attention to where they toss the bottles of water, shampoo, lotion, etc? If the TSA took liquid explosives as a serious potential threat, one would expect them to handle the dangerous substances with a little more care. No, this is just security theater. And every day Americans are asking for more of this so-called "protection."

Submitted by Insurgent on

annoyed said:
Terrorist Ramzi Yousef used a bottle of saline solution (the bottle actually contained liquid nitrogen)...

annoyed, you might want to do some research on the physical properties of liquid nitrogen.

Submitted by Anonymous on

I have a real problem trying to bring large amounts of food through security. They take sauce, etc. If the airport cannot provide food for all dietary needs, you should be allowed to bring all of the food you want with you. At least until they can provide me with a vegan meal, so I don't have to bring 12 hours of food with me.

Submitted by Toby on

Dear Mods:

I made an extensive and polite reply to Anonymous 10:29 PM's post which insulted me. It was a personal attack. You allowed it to be posted but would not post my reply. What's the deal?

Submitted by 100KFlyer on

Marginal effectiveness - The elusive concept
First off, I consider the liquid ban, shoe screening, etc. to be very close to pure "security theater" put on so that the travelling public "feels safe." The marginal effectiveness of all of these measures is near zero, i.e. a truly determined enemy will ALWAYS find ways around these checks. If you don't believe me then consider that access security of a much more stringent nature (e.g. supermax prisons) is equally unsuccessful in stopping contraband (weapons & drugs).
Now, you might say, "Even if we can't stop everybody, we should screen as much as possible. It won't hurt anybody to take their shoes off or to comply with the 3-1-1 rule."
Unfortunately, the cost of the current regime ("Doing ineffective things efficiently") is not zero. Far from it. 2 million passengers per day are spending between 5 to 30 minutes extra due to "heightened security," tens of thousands of dollars of property are destroyed (wine, liquids, cosmetics), some percentage of travellers will get sick from the incredibly unhygienic conditions created by putting dirty shoes together with other articles of clothing, etc. etc.

The simple loss of productivity alone (2 million times 15 minutes = 30,000,000 minutes = 500,000 person hours wasted EVERY DAY) should give you an idea of the size of the problem. These measures are NOT FREE, as a matter of fact, they are very costly and damaging to our national economy. Of course, another terrorist attack would also be very expensive, but how many attacks have been foiled by TSA screeners? How many, on the other hand, have been foiled by good police work before the presumed attackers even got the airport?
Should we continue to misallocate dollars and time to a line of defense that does not contribute to the marginal security of air travel?
I consider the security theater in place at airports today to be similar to welding six inch armor plating to your commuter sedan. The steel would add extra security in the extremely unlikely event of a rocket attack on your way to work, but at the same time the cost in extra gasoline, ruined shocks & suspension and worn out brake pads makes the up-armoring of your vehicle a wasteful, ineffective "precaution."

Submitted by Girl4God on

Millions of people travel each and every day. The TSA doesn't know what the bad guys look like and they certainly don't have the time or manpower to test every one's liquids. Every traveler has the option of placing liquids in checked baggage. If you don't want to exercise that option, than that is your choice. Just remember that you do have choices. Everything else that most people are debating is trivial. The rules are in place for a reason. Regardless of whether or not you agree with the rules and regulations, it is a lot less stress on everyone if you just follow them.

Submitted by Toby on

Here's me . . . still waiting for the opportunity to respond to the anonymous post which slandered me AGAINST COMMENT POLICY.

I responded carefully within the rules on them and yet they were censored.

Chance, I hope you're reading this. I was beginning to think you were shooting straight with me. If I don't have the opportunity to respond to Anonymous 10:29 PM, then I will conclude that the comment policy only applies to those who are not in favor of the TSA, and also conclude that you are personally a liar because you led be strongly to believe otherwise.

I don't want to think that. Give me a reason not to.

Submitted by Toby on

OK boys, you got me. I was about to give up and just sent what I thought would be my last post on this blog. When I hit "send" my comment from yesterday came up!

Wooohooo! My hope in TSA humans is renewed!

Submitted by Anonymous on

Why is it that certain names are automatically targeted to be checked? We cannot help what we are named and then while people with "targeted" names are being checked, the common-named person imposing danger is going through with out a problem

Submitted by Annoyed on

Insurgent said: you might want to do some research on the physical properties of liquid nitrogen.

I say: Why? I don't want to build a bomb...but that guy did and he used a bottle of saline solution to get it on board the plane.

Submitted by Ribs on

aimee said...

I'm a TSO in ORD [Chicago O'hare]...Any liquid, gel, cream or aerosol not fitting this size can be...mailed to you


I'm a little surprised that you would suggest something deemed dangerous enough not to be allowed on an aircraft instead be put into the USPS system.

The simple fact that you don't immediately confiscate such items really makes the whole thing look like a farce.

Submitted by TSA TSO NY on

"On December 11, 1994, Yousef built another bomb, which had one tenth of the power that his final bombs were planned to have, in the lavatory of an aircraft. He left it inside the life jacket under his seat, 26K, and got off the plane when it arrived in Cebu. Yousef had boarded the flight under the assumed name of Armaldo Forlani, using a false Italian passport. The aircraft was Philippine Airlines Flight 434 on a Manila to Narita route, stopping partway at Cebu. Yousef had set the timer for four hours after he got off the aircraft. The bomb exploded while the aircraft was over Minami Daito Island, near Okinawa, Japan. A Japanese businessman named Haruki Ikegami was killed after the bomb detonated. The Boeing 747-200 safely made an emergency landing in Naha, Okinawa. None of the aircraft's other 272 passengers or any members of the crew were killed, although 10 passengers in front of Ikegami were injured. Yousef then planned which flights to attack for Phase I."

Submitted by TSA TSO NY on

"The bomb
The "Mark II" "microbombs" had Casio digital watches as the timers, stabilizers that looked like cotton wool balls, and an undetectable nitroglycerin as the explosive. Other ingredients included glycerin, nitrate, sulfuric acid, and minute concentrations of nitrobenzene, silver azide (silver trinitride), and liquid acetone. Two 9-volt batteries in each bomb were used as a power source. The batteries would be connected to light bulb filaments that would detonate the bomb. Murad and Yousef wired an SCR as the switch to trigger the filaments to detonate the bomb. There was an external socket hidden when the wires were pushed under the watch base as the bomber would wear it. The alteration was so small that the watch could still be worn in a normal manner.[3][7][9]

Yousef got batteries past airport security during his December 11 test bombing of Philippine Airlines Flight 434 by hiding them in hollowed-out heels of his shoes. Yousef smuggled the nitroglycerin on board by putting it inside a contact lens solution bottle."

This is why you take off shoes & we limit liquids.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Once again the public gets to put TSA down with the negative comments. These blogs attract mostly uneducated, smart-*** comments and remarks directed toward the people who are really trying to protect them. AMAZING!
Most sign these comments "anonymously". Who are you afraid of? At least use your first real name, it shows more validity and courage to do it that way. It all becomes a huge blur when all you see is "anonymous" and the same harping and whining about the same thing over and over.
WHY DOESN"T TSA MAKE PUBLIC ALL THE THINGS THAT HAVE BEEN FOUND IN BAGS AND ON PEOPLE TRYING TO ACCESS OUR AIRCRAFTS? I've heard the reason is because TSA does not want to cause a panic in the general public. It would make more sense to let these people know TSA IS finding stuff everyday, instead of worrying that they might scare the public. I think the public needs a reality check.

Submitted by Toby on

RE: Anonymous at 10:25 AM

It's ironic that you would criticize folks of my point of view by saying that we've been anonymous when you yourself remained anonymous.

Should I consider the blinding light of your reason of representative of all those who hold your position?

Probably not, but your rudeness and obvious inability to think logically tempt me to do so.

So, consider outing yourself before your criticize others for remaining anonymous.

Submitted by Jon on

Regarding the post immediately above, we’re all for open dialogue but ask that contributors remain respectful and on topic.

TSA Blogger

Submitted by YourFriendlyTSA... on

It is amazing how many people (passengers) do not listen to the PA system while waiting in line. I wonder if they watch the news. do they really listen to the news? Liquids Gels and aerosols have been banned for quite some time. Not to mention that 3.4 ounces means 3.4 ounces. Not 8 or 20oz. Get a clue. If your going to travel at least be informed. It benefits the traveler to read the websites that are available. If you can't read, then at least ask your travel agent to read it for you. I know travel agent can read. Or better yet do the Monkey See, Monkey DO. It does not take a rocket scientist to figure it out.
Most of the people who work for TSA are educated and deserve your respect. The officers on the floor are hard working and caring people who take your verbal and physical abuse daily. For every grumpy nasty or ignorant passenger that flies, there are a thousand that are informed, kind and grateful we are there.
Many thanks to the friendly fliers and the passengers that are informed, you unkowningly help make a tough job a little easier.

To the whiners, get with system and or take Am Track.

Submitted by Toby on

TO: "Your friendly TSA officer"

Can you imagine a company in the private sector saying what you just posted? No person who is subject to competition in the free market would dream of giving their customers such an ultimatum.

But you don't face competition for your services. You have a position guaranteed by the force of government violence. You therefore feel you are entitled to say anything you want to your customers.

This is just one more reason why government should stay out of our lives, and leave the providing of all goods and services to the professionals in the private sector.

It won't be perfect, but we will be free.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Take an empty water bottle through security with you and fill it up at a drinking fountain on the other side. I bring my empty travel mug all the time and sometimes it gets dirty looks but it hasn't been confiscated yet.

Recently I got through security with a 4oz bottle of cough syrup (half empty but nobody even touched it).

Submitted by Toby on

Anonymous at February 5, 2008 1:25 PM said...

"Once again the public gets to put TSA down with the negative comments. These blogs attract mostly uneducated, smart-*** comments and remarks directed toward the people who are really trying to protect them. AMAZING!"

Do the little *** marks mean that this post did not TECHNICALLY contain profanity? I though profanity was prohibited?

So help me out. It only TECHNICAL profanity prohibited? Or is it only OK to use profanity if you're pro-TSA?

How this question is answered might give the general public some insight into how the screening rules are interpreted.


Submitted by Anonymous on


I am a TSO, as well as a political science / criminal justice student in my final year of college. Before I started with TSA 3 months ago, I was in the private security sector (4 years), and can tell you that the government has the basics of a large security force down better than any of the major private security companies.

One major difference is pay. Before the establishment of TSA, many private security companies at major airports were paying their employees HALF of what most TSOs are making as a starting salary. Increased pay is an instant motivator, and, on a national level, I believe it has encouraged many TSOs to perform their duties with dignity, class and a sense of patriotism.

As for the rude / inconsiderate TSA agents you may have come across, all I can say is that with a workforce hovering around 50,000 (it may be a little more or less at this point), you will have a mix of many kinds of people from different cultures, ways of life, etc. It disapoints me that my co-workers may have acted in an unkind manner, but each individual person/incident has its own set of circumstances, and I have no authority or right to speak on anyone else's behalf. I work hard at what I do, I'm as patriotic as an American citizen will come, and I'm looking forward to progressing through the government, with an ultimate goal of federal law enforcement.

The current rules and procedures are what TSA has deemed to be the most appropriate and security-effective for this point in time, and it will be changing as time goes on. DHS is the youngest governemt agency in existence. It must grow, as every other government agency has. Things will change, and will continue to change many times, so don't expect anything to be written in stone.

Remember, this IS the federal government, and not a private company, nor should we be treated as if we are such. There are gray lines concerning the enforcement of these detailed rules and a handful of other issues, but it will be sorted out in due time.

I personally greatly appreciate what you have to say, along with what every other passenger I've encountered has had to say, be it nice, nasty, grateful or otherwise. I understand the frustrations passengers have, and the confusion that new rules have created (there are credible reasons for these rules). Please don't hesitate to continue voicing your concerns and comments. I look forward to feedback.

Submitted by Anonymous on

for poster anonymous on February 4, 2008 10:15 AM
3 oz is not easier for global use, I think only one other country persist in using ounces. 100 ml is the more global value and so the rule to improve universality should be 100-1-1. 3-1-1 is used to give TSA an excuse to toss items above 3 oz but under 3.4 cos "locally" they enforce the rules "better".

Remember, paragraphs exist for a reason.

In some countries where TSA performs screening fights heading to the US, there is often not water provided. See other posts on this site. Water is Not available to buy and no water fountains at all past security in airports. If TSA is capable of insuring that there is water available for basic hydration, then MAYBE tossing water is acceptable. But without insuring water to be available, they are endangering people.

And as for the customers (or rather hostages) failing "to realize how much time is added to that process time=money and would significantly add to operating costs". We Do understand the costs, the costs to US in wasted time both in time spent waiting in line, in trying in ernest to follow rules and failing due to arbitrary enforcement, and in products destroyed that are not hazardous which could all be saved if a whiffer or buffer or whatever was used on liquids.

I guess the costs is acceptable if we are the only ones who have to pay.

Submitted by Dave X on

TSA TSO NY @February 5, 2008 12:39 PM

You still allow liquid acetone, that's what fingernail polish remover is.

yourfriendlytsaofficer @ :"To the whiners, get with system and or take Am Track."

I know someone who now drives to avoid the hassles of the new system if they can make the trip in 10 hours or less. The Transportation "Safety" Administration is probably causing more people to die in car wrecks than they are saving by screening,

Submitted by Toby on

RE: Anonymous at February 5, 2008 9:31 PM

I guess I'm so shocked by what you had to say that I don't even know how to respond. It's like you didn't even read my posts.

I have repeatedly tried to help folks understand that my objection is the the very existence of any government mandated security on any airline or in any airport (with the possible exception of requiring cockpits to be virtually impenetrable).

This is because these regulations and agencies such as the TSA and DHA are unconstitutional and totalitarian. Their efficiency is irrelevant to the point.

I will post a longer and more detailed reply tomorrow, but for now I just want to sit and weep in horror at what I have seen . . .

Submitted by Mr Ed on

My whine on the "liquids policy" would be inconsistent and unreasonable interpretation of policy. For example, at the Dayton airport, I had a tube of toothpaste, well over 75% used, and fairly obvious. It was confiscated because, when it was first purchased, it was over 3oz (4.5, if memory serves). Binding the hands and common sense of TSA personnel needs to be reviewed.

Submitted by Jack on
I will post a longer and more detailed reply tomorrow, but for now I just want to sit and weep in horror at what I have seen . . .

No, no, anything but that. Toby, you've made your point. You don't want any security. Would you even approve of what El Al does? Is that too intrusive to your liking?
Submitted by Chrisqi on

The problem with TSA isn't so much TSA itself, it is the U.S. Congress which passes the laws giving TSA the authority to do what it does -- however lacking in common sense it may be.

To make matters worse surrounding this fact, Congressmen and women have exempted themselves from airport screening. All they have to do is show their US Congress IDs and they can bypass all the lines and aggravation the rest of us have to go through.

Now I don't know about you, but I think their are probably more career criminals in the US Congress than their are in the general flying public.

Until citizens tell Congress it needs to follow the same rules they subject the rest of us to, nothing will be done.

How can these clowns in DC know how bad it is if they don't ever have to experience it themselves?

Call your member of Congress and tell them to fix TSA and to quit exempting themselves from all the rules the rest of us have to live by!

Submitted by Anonymous on

Chrisqi said:
To make matters worse surrounding this fact, Congressmen and women have exempted themselves from airport screening. All they have to do is show their US Congress IDs and they can bypass all the lines and aggravation the rest of us have to go through.

No they don't! As a TSO, I see plenty of Congressmen come thru my checkpoint. They come thru just like everyone else, sometimes crabby, but they do follow the rules! There are some, that when traveling with their posse of secret service agents are allowed to bypass security, but the majority of them are standing in line waiting with the rest of you!

Get your info straight.