USA Flag

Official website of the Department of Homeland Security

Transportation Security Administration

Passengers Asked For It, Passengers Got It: Passenger Feedback Used in Checkpoint Evolution

Archived Content

Please note that older content is archived for public record. This page may contain information that is outdated and may not reflect current policy or programs.

If you have questions about policies or procedures, please contact the TSA Contact Center.

Members of the news media may contact TSA Public Affairs.

Friday, April 11, 2008

While screening 2 million people every day, you learn a thing or two. In addition to this on-the-job learning, we specifically sought out passenger feedback on how a checkpoint could be designed to make their lives a little easier. Easier processes equal more relaxed, patient people. More relaxed, patient people equal better security for everybody.

What we leaned and incorporated is: People want someplace to get ready for screening, people want to move at their own pace and people want somewhere to sit down and put themselves back together after screening.

That’s why we have introduced the prep stop and re-composure benches to the Checkpoint Evolution.

The prep stop allows passengers that need to prepare for screening an unhurried, plastic-bag, trash can and recycle bin-filled environment in which they can make those last minute preparations. This part of the Checkpoint Evolution also helps these travelers better prepare for screening without the cold shoulder from the pinstripe-suited business traveler tapping his wing-tips on the tile floor.


The re-composure benches are specifically designed to accommodate two people and are even split-level to foster sharing and tying those wing-tips when you're done with screening. It's a place to put yourself back together before heading off to your gate.


A lot of thought and feedback has gone into these and the other elements of Checkpoint Evolution and we welcome any suggestions you might have to make this concept even better.

Christopher
EOS Blog Team

Comments

Submitted by Anonymous on

I have been flying a lot recently, with a 4 and 1 year old (and a husband;-), and I want to thank you for the changes. Especially coming back from Disney in March, loaded down with things, including double stroller and swim noodle, it made a huge difference to be waved into a 'family' line and to have places to sit to regather. Also, your workers are just nicer now, a huge difference from 2 years ago when a TSA screener required us to rip the teddy rabbit from my then 2 year old's hands, without talking to her or explaining anything and while pushing us to hurry. We expect to spend a long time now, and we are happy with the ability to do it in a stress free way.

Submitted by Ms OPL on

Are these available everywhere or just in selected airports? What about Cleveland?

Submitted by A Pi**ed Off Pa... on

Try explaining some of your rules to the traveling public.

Why do I have to get my CPAP machine (for those suffering from sleep apnea) screened for explosives EACH time I travel????? It has to XRAYED and then get swabbed for explosives yet NO ONE will explain why!!!!!

Submitted by Txrus on

Who's paying for this? If, like the rest of your recently unveiled re-decorating attempts, it will be up to each individual airport to purchase this evolved checkpoint Kip & Kompany are now 'selling' (his words, btw), then it's doubtful we'll see these in most airports simply because of financial constraints.

Honestly, the idea of having benches or chairs on the other side of the checkpoint isn't a hard one to come up with in the first place, though it speaks volumes that it apparently did take the TSA 6 yrs & 3+ mos worth of blogging to figure it out. Some airports have long had them, like PHX & DFW, so those that could afford to do so, or had the space to do so, have already done it. Those who don't have the space or the $$ to do it still won't if TSA isn't going to pony up for the renovations needed to make this happen.

Submitted by Sandra on

"Why do I have to get my CPAP machine (for those suffering from sleep apnea) screened for explosives EACH time I travel????? It has to XRAYED and then get swabbed for explosives yet NO ONE will explain why!!!!!"

Because you're guilty until proven innocent in the eyes of the TSA, no matter if this is the first time you've flown or the 101st you've flown.

My heavens to Betsy, you could be a decoy, you could have been recruited by an evil terrorist between flights and packed the machine with explosives, you could have fertilizer residue on your hands which transferred to the CPAP and makes you even more suspect....so many scenarios come out of the minds of the threat community, who are totally convinced that there are terrorists behind every tree just waiting to get us.

Submitted by Kellymae81 on

"Why do I have to get my CPAP machine screenedc for explosives?"

Unfortunately, the rules for these procedures cannot be explained because they are sensitive security information.

Submitted by HSVTSO Dean on
Ms. Opl wrote:

Supposedly, it's going to happen everywhere sooner or later. If it's anything like everything else the TSA does, it has to be rolled out in phases. I can tell you that there's nothing like that here at Huntsville yet; can't speak to Cleveland.

A passenger, apparently somewhat angry, wrote:

Why do I have to get my CPAP machine (for those suffering from sleep apnea) screened for explosives EACH time I travel????? It has to XRAYED and then get swabbed for explosives yet NO ONE will explain why!!!!!

Short answer, from the TSO perspective: Because TSA said so.

Longer answer, from the TSO perspective: Now, ignore the fact that it looks like I'm being arrogant — I know about as much as you do in this regard, as a screener on the floor for a little under six years. One day we came into work, and in morning in-briefing the Supervisor said "Oh, yeah, by the way, and now CPAP machines have to be taken out of their bags like a laptop computer, and still have to be ETD'd."

(The ETDing of CPAP machines has been going on for some time)

It's not just CPAP machines, though. It's any kind of respiratory/oxygen/breathing-machine apparatus, including oxygen tanks and air ionizers and humidifers and pretty much anything that alters the way air is breathed or assists in the breathing of air.

Presumably, and this is just me crunching my brain gears together in the knowing-what-is-possible route compared against the knowing-what-they-are-capable-of routines, this is to safeguard against some kind of... well, you see, the nature of it is... hm.

Good point. I don't know either.

But, like in so many other ways, I'm here to do the job that they tell me to do, so I do it.

They say that all the breathing-machine stuff has to be screened for explosives; I can only assume that, somewhere up the chain of command, someone a lot smarter than I am (and likely with some kind of intelligence report in their hand) said that it'd be a good idea.

Literally speaking, TSA told us to do it, and didn't offer up any kind of justification for why it should be done. Not to us, anyway.

:)

Maybe someone else can give a more exacting, more official answer, assuming something more exacting and more official doesn't qualify as SSI.

Just out of curiosity though, why is that enough to get you miffed? At least a lot of other people on here are upset for what they see to be civil liberties violations or what they think are privacy infringements (and more on very legitimate complaints of screener conduct or appearance§) but you're getting steamed over a process that takes about ten seconds at the most, and is usually done (at least at my airport) while you're getting the rest of your stuff together and put on. Here at Huntsville, the total impact of the ETDing-of-CPAP machines on passenger throughput time is just maybe a single fingernail's edge above negligable.

§ - Just an observation, since I've seen so many people complaining about "twenty-something kids" running around the checkpoints having no business being there: I'm twenty-five years old, and I'll be marking my sixth year with the TSA in October.

P.S.: I know it's probably not the definitive answer you were hoping for, Mr. Angry Passenger, but I thought you'd get even more angry if someone didn't say anything at all to it, like so many other questions get unanswered.
Submitted by Randy on

Y'all are real quick learners. it's been almost seven years, and you finally figured out if you make people take their shoes off, a seat might be helpful.

What's next? A water fountain?

Submitted by New England Flyer on

One request: I would like see mailboxes *outside* of the security area so we can mail our prohibited items. A lot of airports have these already, but (as I've found out on many occasions) many airports/terminals *don't*.

Yes, we should leave those items at home but I'm a engineer that uses items like picks, multi-tools (Leatherman/etc), screwdrivers, etc on a daily basis and sometimes I just forget and leave something in a jacket pocket or buried in my carry-on bag. Between making sure my liquids meet the carry-on limit, remembering ID/tickets, rushing to the airport and so on, sometimes things get lost in the shuffle.

When I get to the airport and realize that my knife is still in my bag I'd like to have an option other than "throw out my $50 Wengar tool" or "miss my flight."

Submitted by Anonymous on
What we leaned [sic] and incorporated is: People want someplace to get ready for screening, people want to move at their own pace and people want somewhere to sit down and put themselves back together after screening.

Since I really do want to encourage any attempts the TSA makes to provide improvements based on our feedback, I'll begin by promising to express my appreciation for these genuinely useful improvements when I actually see them.

There are two issues immediately apparent in this announcement. The first is how many airports will actually have those "prep areas" and "composure benches"? From what I've seen, too many airports barely have room for the current security checkpoints. Most of the space has to be taken up with a corral to contain the herd of cattle/passengers as they wait for screening. There's just enough room for a small table at the entrance where one or two passengers can hurriedly separate their laptops, shoes, jackets, and single clear plastic zip-lock bag with loosely-packed containers of liquids and toiletries in manufacturer's labeled packages. At the end of the checkpoint, there's barely room for one or two chairs for those passengers who can't manage to balance on one foot while putting their shoes back on and gathering up their separated belongings. So where are you going to put those prep areas and composure benches? Still, it's a nice gesture on the TSA's part-- even if it's impractical to actually be implemented at major airports.

The more serious problem is that these improvements, while nice, address only peripheral issues. If you had actually leaned [sic?] and incorporated "what people want," you would have announced that you've reconsidered the dubious War On Liquids, Toiletries, and Shoes and its capricious "interpretation." And more importantly, you would have published a TSO Code Of Conduct that mandates respect for passengers, imposes disciplinary action on bullying TSOs, and provides a channel for reporting abuses with an explicit promise that users need not fear retaliation. If you actually read the comments, you'd see that's what people want! If you really think that offering us a peripheral, incremental improvement (which may not be practical for widespread implementation) will appease and distract us from the real problems, you're only making things worse by insulting our intelligence.

But in fairness to Christopher and whoever else may actually care about improving the "experience" of passengers at checkpoints, I honestly suspect they're doing the best the TSA and Homeland Security bureaucracy will permit. The top officials are probably adamant about the need for the War On Liquids, Toiletries, and Shoes, as well as the need for maximum "flexibility" in implementing rules and procedures. And some top managers may believe that bullying and intimidation is an appropriate and necessary way to treat passengers, since all passengers are presumed to be terrorists and criminals until proven otherwise. So I have no doubt that you're trying very hard to do what you can for passengers within strict constraints-- and also that you surely have worked very hard to devise this improvement. Thank you for that, but I think very little will actually change.
Submitted by Beau Woods on

Wow, good ideas! I especially like the split-tiered benches. I wonder what it would cost to make them in a wave shape instead of angled? It might encourage people to use them by being perceived as more round and usable. Of course one drawback is that some kids (and kids at heart like myself) might be tempted to slide on them.

Submitted by Anonymous on

In the Lubbock, TX. airport today there were 10 (ten) TSA employees at the security checkpoint. Why on earth was there only one machine open? Why couldn't any of those employees go help the ONE guy handling all the luggage for the Southwest ticket counter? It is inefficiencies like this that give TSA its much deserved feeling of incompetence at the airport level. Six people do not need to operate one x-ray machine with three supervisors and one person in the "secure checkpoint" area.

Submitted by Anonymous on

@a Pi**ed Off Passenger:

Dude, you have to have your CPAP machine screened each time because they don't know what you did with it since the last time it was screened. Maybe you ripped the guts out and filled with 4oz of liquids! Or maybe explosives, or razor blades. Just like you have to walk through the metal detector each time, the bulky electronic machine you want to take on the plane has to be scanned each time. That one is not really that hard to figure out.

Submitted by Anonymous on

When are you going to incorporate the suggestions about not lying to cover up mistakes? This blog has a disturbing signal/spin ratio.

When are you going to respond in a real way to the repeated question of why so-called "dangerous" liquids are allowed to be mixed together in trash cans. (No analogies! Scientific facts only please!)

When is the reasoning behind the new TSA "faux-cop" uniform going to be explained?

Given any thought to the suggestion that complaint forms be readily available to all who desire them without having to ask a TSA employee?

Congratulations on figuring out that people need benches to tie their shoes. I hope someone in R&D got promoted for that one.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Now, if could change the liquids policy and the ban on small knives just because they are (Gasp!) KNIVES.......

Submitted by Christopher on

"Why do I have to get my CPAP machine (for those suffering from sleep apnea) screened for explosives EACH time I travel????? It has to XRAYED and then get swabbed for explosives yet NO ONE will explain why!!!!!"

Because terrorist could easily hide explosives in a CPAP machine we need to give them extra scrutiny. Think I'm making this up? Go to our home page, tsa.gov and click on the story titled common items, extraordinary threat in the flash box. If a detonator can be hidden in a watch, imagine what can be hidden in your CPAP.

The only reason we screen you, your CPAP machine and your checked lugage is for the safety of the traveling public.

Christopher
EOS Blog Team

Submitted by Anonymous on

"If a detonator can be hidden in a watch, imagine what can be hidden in your CPAP."

It never ends, does it Christopher? Always have to come up with something else that can be a threat to keep yourselves employed.

Submitted by Anonymous on

While you're rethinking, you should also rethink the idea of dressing up your screeners as law enforcement officers.

Submitted by Anonymous on

when will the whole "checkpoint evolution" be available throughout the country, i currently work in BOS and would like to see these changes soon

Submitted by Anonymous on
Think I'm making this up? Go to our home page, tsa.gov and click on the story titled common items, extraordinary threat in the flash box. If a detonator can be hidden in a watch, imagine what can be hidden in your CPAP.

The only reason we screen you, your CPAP machine and your checked lugage is for the safety of the traveling public.

Christopher
EOS Blog Team


Sorry, but you're going to have to do better than that. A person could plant explosives on their person sans detonator and walk through security.
Submitted by Anonymous on

"Because terrorist could easily hide explosives in a CPAP machine we need to give them extra scrutiny."

Or they could be hiding them in the unassuming carryon just after it, that you're not paying attention to because there's this newfangled whatsit right here that might be a bomb. TSA still misses what, 80% of all bomb detection tests? And instead of improving that, you still want to waste more effort on what ifs and could bes?

Get that miss rate under 5%. If a bomb, conventionally smuggled the way a mustache-twirling, trenchcoated maniacal cartoon villain might smuggle it has a 19 out of 20 chance to be detected and caught, then we can talk. Then you can start in about shoes and liquids and passengers owning the checkpoint. Then we can think about things "they might try." Until then, concentrate on basic competence and customer service. Lord knows you have room to improve.

Submitted by Anonymous on

I guess my only comment is: how come it took 5 years to figure out the need for a "recomposure" bench? (Written while sitting in the San Francisco airport, which doesn't have said benches yet -- I had to "recompose" myself in a nearby restaurant.)

Submitted by Gunner on

Brilliant.

Absolutely flipping brilliant.

You finally figured out that people need to be able to sit down to take off their shoes and then sit down so the can put them back on again.

And you expect us to stand and applaud.

And how much did these fancy chairs cost? Or is that a top-secret, national security, double-cripto secret as well?

Let me guess -- were they less than an Air Force Toilet Seat, how about a Pentagon Hammer?

Bet there was a comma in the number -- for each one.

Did the installers have nipple rings?

Submitted by Anonymous on

"we welcome any suggestions you might have to make this concept even better"

How about you geniuses drop the pointless liquid restrictions and stop making passengers get their shoes X-rayed on the basis of one (1) idiot who tried to use his shoes for something over SIX YEARS AGO?

Submitted by Seo on

Try explaining some of your rules to the traveling public.

Submitted by Anonymous on

The death spiral puts TSA in perspective. Guess where death from airline terrorism (U01.1) lies?

Submitted by TSO NY on

a Pi**ed Off Passenger said...
Try explaining some of your rules to the traveling public.

Why do I have to get my CPAP machine (for those suffering from sleep apnea) screened for explosives EACH time I travel????? It has to XRAYED and then get swabbed for explosives yet NO ONE will explain why!!!!!

April 11, 2008 10:08 AM



As a TSo it annoys me when passengers assume the worst, complain or make things up because they don't understand what's going on or why we do certain thing. Unfortunately though, we don't always have the time or authority to explain things to you during the security process.

Submitted by Jay on
Christopher is right; CPAPs make a good hiding place. A short while back our officers found a loaded 45 caliber handgun in a CPAP bag at the Passenger Checkpoint.

(Click on my name above to view the catch)

If someone can fit this hand cannon in a CPAP bag they can certainly fit explosives in there too.

TSA Officers who have a machine also have theirs screened and as a Federal Security Director my CPAP gets screened as well. The rules apply to everyone, even those who are responsible for enforcing them.

Jay
EoS Blog Team
Submitted by Anonymous on

"If a detonator can be hidden in a watch, imagine what can be hidden in your CPAP."

Then why allow anyone to travel with anything? Imagine what could be hidden in a fake pregnancy suit, in false fillings, wrapped in swallowed condoms, OMG BREAST IMPLANTS! I love the TSA reasoning of "if you aren't scared yet, you aren't imagining hard enough." What if, what if, what if.

As long as the TSA is failing to detect tested threats at 70% or so then the TSA is a complete waste of taxpayers money. USA Today reported last year that the TSA at LAX failed 75% of the time, 60% of the time at O'Hare. Security at SFO failed 20% of the time because it is NOT the TSA providing security.
TSA=EPIC FAIL

Submitted by Anonymous on

Hehehehehe. Pretty good, there guys trying 'to stuff the ballot' by getting TSOs to line up with the take the CPAPs out and go through them with a fine toothed comb, while I posted a comment last night April 11, and that one has yet to be approved for posting.

A dedicated terrorist could, if they were so inclined, take plastic explosives and form them to fit a section of the terrorist's body (i.e. back, belly, buttocks).

Guys you're running defense and defense only provides a delaying action at best. The FBI, CIA, NSA, Military, etc are at the tip of the spear. TSA only provides a weak net to catch terrorists because TSA lacks the information gathering capabilities that the other agencies/groups currently provide.

Submitted by Anonymous on

I think this prep stop and recomposure area idea is good - and long overdue.

However, there's still potential for harassment. Please do not use this to tell people "you've had enough time, move on" especially in the recomposure area, where people traveling in couples, families or groups are bound to wait for their companions.

Submitted by Anonymous on

HOORAY, TSA realizes that people like to SIT DOWN to put on their shoes...

Guys. We just spent how much time and money on this "evolution"?? Try going to the airport and flying once or twice, and it would be obvious. Immediately. To even somebody mildly retarded.

If TSA takes so long to make the simplest changes, whose practicality are obvious to everyone, and spends lots of effort putting some inane PR campaign around that...do you wonder why nobody takes you all seriously?

If this is the best you can turn out, FIRE all that deadwood and just take your advice from this blog. You'll do better AND save taxpayer money. Not that competence seems to be in your mission statement.

Submitted by Tyler F on

These are good ideas, and I hope to see them at DIA soon.

One follow-up would be to add comment cards to the re-composure station. We (the American public) have suggested and asked for this thousands of times: it's time to add comment cards right at the end of screening.

Submitted by Cilt Bakimi on

thanks....

Submitted by The Right Foot on

With all due respects,
Is this video footage and narrative NOT a breach of security in its own right? Given the current security climate in your part of the world.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Now, modify the rule against small (Gasp!) knives.

Submitted by Anonymous on

TSO NY said .....

As a TSo it annoys me when passengers assume the worst, complain or make things up because they don't understand what's going on or why we do certain thing.

...................................

Kinda like when you said if a medicine has no prescription it doesn't go? Still haven't answered the many questions that post caused have you?

Now your annoyed because we don't trust or understand your arbitrary made up rules?

TSA and TSO's like you are the problem and the sooner that is acknowledged then some forward progress will be possible.

So get annoyed, if I have a question I will state it and expect a polite expanation from the screener it was posed to!

Submitted by Abelard on
As a TSo it annoys me when passengers assume the worst, complain or make things up because they don't understand what's going on or why we do certain thing.

As a member of the traveling public, it annoys me when TSO staff assume the worst about their customers, make things up like needing a prescription to carry any type of medicine on a plane or make things up like people being able to make a liquid explosive on board a plane because they don't understand what is going on.

Unfortunately though, we don't always have the time or authority to explain things to you during the security process.

Then call your supervisor over to explain it to me. IF you are unable to provide basic resolution to basic customer inquiries then perhaps being a TSO isn't what you should be doing.
Submitted by John Mc on

So I get a chair to put my shoes on, but still have to sit on the floor or hop around to take them off? hmmmm. (oh, and last time I flew there were no 'take off your shoe' signs, we were just yelled at when we didn't...

Submitted by Trollkiller on

Are we going to have a new post for every section of the "New and Improved" screening station?

We have already given you our opinions on the initial post.

1. We don't like the fancy lights and soothing music. We don't like it because it is not there to enhance our experience it is there in an attempt to subtly CONTROL the public.

In a typical elitist "we know better than you" fashion, the TSA went to so called behavioral experts to learn how to control the "hostile" and "stressful" behavior of the passengers. I wonder how much the TSA paid of MY money on the worthless recommendations.

The people on this blog and the people in line at the airports have told the TSA repeatedly, if you want to "de-stress" the screening area;

STOP YELLING. Treat us as fellow citizens and NOT criminals.

STOP PRETENDING. You are NOT law enforcement officers, quit acting like it. "Do you want to fly today?" should never leave your lips.

STOP ABUSING. Take care of our property as if it were your own. Take care of us as if we were your own.

In other words, if you want to de-stress the screening area, reign in abusive TSOs.
-----------------------------

Prep areas and "re-composure" benches are great ideas. Like I already said, make the trash can opening bigger and outline in a contrasting color so us old folks can hit it. Keep that area Disney CLEAN.

Re-composure benches just begs the question "at what point in the TSA line did I decompose?" I would suggest a long counter along the side for those of us that don't need to sit down and put our shoes on but need a place to put our stuff while we do the one legged dance.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Christopher is right; CPAPs make a good hiding place. A short while back our officers found a loaded 45 caliber handgun in a CPAP bag at the Passenger Checkpoint.

(Click on my name above to view the catch)

If someone can fit this hand cannon in a CPAP bag they can certainly fit explosives in there too.

TSA Officers who have a machine also have theirs screened and as a Federal Security Director my CPAP gets screened as well. The rules apply to everyone, even those who are responsible for enforcing them.

Jay
EoS Blog Team

April 12, 2008 12:47 PM

So then why do you make take the CPAP out of my bag? The xray found the gun!

And stop the fear mongering! I can conger up all kinds of "what ifs" about ways to get stuff through security.

Submitted by Trollkiller on

I just finished watching Web Cast on Evolution of Security Blog. Where was Blogger Bob?

I have a few comments on the Web Cast.
First, Chance I like the tie. Very few men could get away with that color and pattern but it works on you. I did not like Kip's tie at all, next time he goes on tape please help him out. For some reason he reminded me of Boss Hog. (from the original series not the movie)

Kip if you don't want your TSOs wasting time calming down upset passengers then STOP the TSOs from upsetting the passengers. STOP the yelling! STOP the bad attitudes of some TSOs. STOP the abuse of our property and ourselves. No fancy lights and crappy new age music needed.

Yes Kip the tone of the blog has changed in the last week. Could it be that the last three posts have been on the lovely new screening area? Of course you won't get the same amount of posters bending your ears back when you tell us of the brilliant idea to put benches so we can put our shoes back on.

Few people want to be jerks and ask why it took so many years to implement something that should have been thought of the minute we were required to kick off our shoes. Most of us are kind and give you a "bless your heart" pass.

Chance, you are right most of the people are on your side. We don't want some idiot on the plane with a dangerous weapon, but we also don't want to be molested when we go through the screening line.

Ethel, yes passengers have tons of practical and cheap to implement ideas because we HAVE to deal with the bad TSOs and with the bad design of screening areas. Most of the people flying are not Govt. workers and we know how we have to treat our customers and we expect and demand to be treated the same way.

Christopher, the blog is a fantastic way to get your side of the story out. Ok so it wasn't the TSA that was confiscating laptops, BUT it was the TSA working with your DHS partners that caused the laptops to be confiscated. To the public the two are the same. If a TSO has me arrested because I did not bow sufficiently, I do not blame the cop that arrested me on the TSO's word, I blame the TSO and the TSA for allowing it.

BTW I had no problem with the booze flowing down Bourbon St. comment. The blog should be informal and the answers should be clear. But, you are not normal people thinking like normal people. You are a PR guy, thinking like a PR guy.
The top folks at the TSA view this as an "us vs. them" scenario. This is evidenced by the light and sound show meant to control the masses.

Between you and me, I like the fact you gave Kip a bit of a pucker moment when he read the Bourbon St. comment. He guesses he is okay with that. LOL Good Job!

Ethel, before wasting MY money on a bunch of pilot programs, try this.

Describe the idea and enable voting on the idea. Take the new and improved screening area y'all are showcasing right now. I can almost guarantee the light and sound show would have received very few votes but the benches would have scored very high.

Gale for 6 years we have been seeking a way to improve the TSA screening process. The blog is a good start but what about something fast food restaurants use, prepaid postage comment cards available at the end of the screening station. Something we DON'T have to ask for. Second make sure the employees name tag is VISIBLE.

Kip, if you want respect for your TSOs, you have to know, you have to give to get. You mentioned your Grinch letter, I for one would like to read that letter. Being below the IRS was no easy feat, most Americans have to deal with the IRS and their aggravating forms on a yearly basis, most people deal with the TSA a lot less frequently.

The TSA accomplished the low approval ratings due to one thing. Lack of respect. I don't think that some of your screeners realize they are part of the service industry. What they and maybe you don't understand is if you treat someone badly they will tell the story to anyone that will listen. Most of the people that hate the TSA have not flown since your creation. They did not have to, one of their friends, relatives, coworkers, clients or vendors told them how shabbily they were treated.

One of the truths my boss drilled into my head when I worked retail was this.

If you treat a customer good they might tell one or two people, if you treat them badly they will tell EVERYBODY.

So start treating us good, and maybe by the time you leave the TSA will have a better approval rating than Congress.

If you want to improve quickly use a secret shopper program. It is very useful in a retail environment because it gives you honest feedback on what your people are doing AND it tends to curb bad behavior when the work force knows that the next person they get snotty with may have a direct line to corporate.

I have a couple of weeks vacation, you buy, I fly. That is a serious offer, I give you permission to track this IP to get my home number. Just ask for Trollkiller.

Submitted by Anonymous on

This works. I flew home from MCO last week and I was amazed how quickly I went through security (in the Expert traveler line). At some (lower volume) airports it might not be so beneficial but it was ideal at MCO.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Christopher:
Your statements might make sense except that the same issue applies to laptops and other items such as children's toys that are carried on-board. A teddy bear could easily be stuffed with something nefarious. Why does a CPAP have to be swabbed for explosives IN ADDITION to being Xrayed?

Also, the comment below from TSO NY is offensive. :

"As a TSo it annoys me when passengers assume the worst, complain or make things up because they don't understand what's going on or why we do certain thing."

Your TSOs need to be reminded that the traveling public pays their salaries. If a simple blog posting upsets them, perhaps they don't have the temperment to serve the public. Give that some thought, won't you?

Submitted by Anonymous on

So TSO NY:
I guess it annoys you that I complained on the blog. You need to get a job where you don't have to work with people. With an attitude like yours, it's no surprise that so many posts on this blog are about screeners.

You need to shut up, do your job professionally and quietly, and let your PR folks respond here because you are clearly unqualified to answer. You are effectively throwing gas on a fire.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Since bad guys *could* hide explosives and weapons in a certain body cavity, why aren't those certain body cavity searches mandatory yet?

Submitted by Ayn R Key on

It is interesting that, in the middle of all the questions and comments that I write that you refuse to answer, you post a blog entry about how you are using feedback and answering comments to improve security and improve processes.

Respond to these:

Given that all chemists agree your 3-1-1 rules makes no sense, why do you continue to enforce it?

Given that nipple rings are by no means deadly weapons, why did you have them removed?

Given that TSOs allegedly don't have the power to deny someone the right to fly, do you recognize any connection between holding someone until after their flight has departed and denying that person their flight?

Given that several states are refusing REAL ID, how do you plan to allow legal passengers to fly?

How can a non-terrorist get his name removed from the terrorism watch list?

Given that according to Kip himself, there is a specific policy against giving additional screening to anyone who complains about screening, is there ever going to be enforcement of that policy?

Since this blog is to facilite communication, why do you always ignore comments on all entries other than the absolutely most recent entry?

Submitted by Anonymous on

TSO NY said...

As a TSo it annoys me when passengers assume the worst, complain or make things up because they don't understand what's going on or why we do certain thing.


It annoys travelers when TSO's state "without a prescription it doesn't go" like you did in another post. You have been asked many times to clarify your statement but have not done so.

So to me asking for clarification is not "making things up" or complaining. It is an attempt to understand why TSA and TSO's are "making up things" as they go.

Submitted by Kellymae81 on

As a TSO, I would like to say that I am tired of being called names like "stupid" and "genius". Many of you disgruntles passengers who have so much to say against us, you don't know the half of what we have to deal with on a day to day basis. I'm not gonna say that we don't some bad apples working for us, but 98% of the people I work with are honest, hard working individuals who are just trying to do their best despite your nasty snide remarks. I would like to ask you if your place of employment works at 100% efficiency every day. We do, despite what you think, try to do things as efficiently as possible with the tools given to us. So how about cutting us a break!

Submitted by Anonymous on

Quote "When I get to the airport and realize that my knife is still in my bag I'd like to have an option other than "throw out my $50 Wengar tool" or "miss my flight.""

How about taking some personal responsibility, checking your stuff as you pack and DON"T BRING IT TO THE AIRPORT!!!

Pages