Main | Saturday, December 26, 2009

Please Remove Your Pants

Is that what's next at airport security checkpoints?
During 19 hours of travel, aboard two flights across three continents, law enforcement officials said, Abdul Farouk Abdulmutallab bided his time. Then, just as Northwest Flight 253 finally began its final approach to Detroit around noon on Friday, he tried to ignite the incendiary powder mixture he had taped to his leg, they said. There were popping sounds, smoke and a commotion as passengers cried out in alarm and tried to see what was happening. And then history repeated itself. Just as occurred before Christmas in 2001 when Richard C. Reid tried to ignite the plastic explosives hidden in his shoe on a trans-Atlantic flight, fellow passengers jumped on Mr. Abdulmutallab, restraining the 23-year-old Nigerian. Crew members poured bottled water on the flames, snuffing out the sparks of what could have been a planewide conflagration.
Check out these coming new safety measures from the TSA, apparently leaked on Air Canada's site.
Although transportation officials had not announced new security measures yet, Air Canada said the Transportation Security Agency would make significant changes to the way passengers are able to move about on aircraft. During the final hour of flight, customers will have to remain seated, will not be allowed access to carry-on baggage and cannot have personal belongings or other items on their laps, according to a notice on Air Canada’s Web site.

In effect, that means passengers on flights of about 90 minutes or less will not be able to get out of their seats, since they are not allowed to move about while an airplane is climbing to its cruising altitude. Air Canada also told its United States bound customers that they would be limited to a single carry-on item and that they would be subjected to personal and baggage searches at security check points and in the gate area. It said this would result in significant delays, canceled flights and missed connections. Air Canada said it would waive the baggage fee for the first checked bag as a result of the new policy.

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