Under the Trump administration, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) continue to make new changes to improve airport security. “Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly has been working to heighten security measures for U.S. fliers since late June, implementing new requirements for nearly 280 airports in more than 100 countries, TSA said Wednesday, CNN reported.
While the TSA only requires few passengers to remove their books at two different airports, due to, “an increased threat to aviation security, the TSA announced this Wednesday that they will be requiring all items larger than a cellphone to be placed in separate bins for X-ray screening.”
“We weren’t judging your books by their covers, just making sure nothing dangerous was inside,” the TSA quipped. “We may recommend passengers remove items such as heavy, glossy programs during a special event with a lot of travelers such as Super Bowl programs.”
Huban Gowadia, TSA’s acting administrator stated, “It is critical for TSA to constantly enhance and adjust security screening procedures to stay ahead of evolving threats and keep passengers safe.”
“By separating personal electronic items such as laptops, tablets, e-readers and handheld game consoles for screening, TSA officers can more closely focus on resolving alarms and stopping terror threats,” Gowadia continued.
Although it was rumored that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was looking to banning laptops as carry-on items, it seems that they will be allowed under a more rigorous screening process.
The latest measures have been introduced to ten airports across the United States on trial basis, but will soon be expanded to airports throughout the entire country. The program is being rolled out in stages, and will soon apply to all international travelers as well as domestic.
“The new screening will apply to devices like e-readers, iPads, and tablets. As the new procedures are phased in, TSA officers will ask passengers to take out their small electronics and ‘place them in a bin with nothing on top or below’ — just like laptops have been scanned for years, the agency said in a statement on Wednesday,” CNN noted.
The business travels showed their support for TSA’s decision to not ban large electronics. “[Global Business Travel Association] members have repeatedly told us that travelers will be willing to spend extra time at security to prevent an outright electronics ban, so we are pleased to see TSA taking steps to enhance security, while still ensuring business travelers can keep their devices with them throughout their flight,” said Michael McCormick, GBTA’s executive director and COO.