Sunday, March 17, 2013

TSA versus Airlines and their Employees

We're hearing a lot on the news about allowing small knives on airlines, and I've got an opinion to share with you.  Since, I worked for an airline (TWA) for thirty-six years I have strong opinions on this issue. 

Even a small knife or a pair of manicure scissors is enough to kill a person if it's in the hands of someone who knows how to use the instrument, and is deranged enough to use the item to maim someone.  Oh, but hey, the risk factor is low. 

What does the TSA mean by saying the risk factor is low in having small knives on board an airline?  They mean the risk factor is so low that it's not likely to happen, and it would only affect one or two people and not the whole plane like an explosion would. 

All of this is true, but what if your family member had a pair of scissors or small knife stuck in their carotid artery and bled to death; would you think the risk factor was low?  Another thing you might ask yourself is: Who carries the burden of protecting the passengers on the airlines?  Is it TSA or the airline?

Can you sue the TSA if someone is killed on board an airline because they allowed small knives to go through, or will the airline be sued?  The airlines have been in trouble for many years, and they can't afford more lawsuits. 

I am totally against any objects being carried on board an airplane, whether sharp or dull, because they can be used as a weapon in the right hands.  I suggest the TSA should do their jobs, or else replace them. 

My hubby retired from an airline, too, but he worked for a contractor hired by the TSA as security at our local airport for two years.  His insight is that the TSA doesn't want to do their job, and since they're a part of Homeland Security you have to wonder what kind of job they're doing. 

TSA and sub-contractors working for the TSA were trained to search for all sharp instruments including knives, razor blades, etc.  If they don't have to do that job now then they are only doing 75% of the job they should be doing.  He calls them a bunch of nincompoops.

How do you feel about knives being carried on airplanes?  Do you think it's worth the risk?

Have a great week, and I'll see you next Sunday. 

Best always,

Sandra K. Marshall


Stacey Joy Netzel said...

I don't feel they should be allowed.

TSA says they want to concentrate on more high-risk items like explosives... correct me if I'm wrong, but there were no explosives brought onboard the 9/11 planes. The terrorists used box cutters to take over, which is the equivalent of a knife.

I agree with you, they should do their jobs.

Sandy said...

Thank you, Stacey. You have my total agreement.

Margaret Taylor said...

*This* is why I do not fly anymore. I refuse. Never mind the delays at security, the lack of maintainence and the general age of the planes in the skies today.

I simply do not fly because I don't trust humans not to do something stupid and try to take over a plane with a pocket knife/box cutter/etc.

I'm to the point nowadays, if I can't drive there, I simply don't go.

I agree completely that TSA needs to get it's head out of its backside and do what we pay them to do. We pay them to protect us, not cave to public pressure and allow a reversal like this which puts everyone in danger...again.

In my opinion, it would only be a matter of time before those that would do us harm, would figure out a way to use this to their advantage.

Ok, crawls down off the soapbox again. Sorry...:D

Melissa Keir said...

It is interesting to get a perspective from someone who worked at an airline. Too often we only hear one side and that is what is put out by the government and media.

Sandy said...

Margaret, I'm sure you aren't the only one who feels the way you do. The airlines are in big trouble since 911. Every time something major happens to the airlines they face challenges getting the public on their planes.

Melissa, there is always another perspective. I always try to see the other side. Thanks for coming by.

Carly Carson said...

I travel separately with my husband if we don't have the kids with us (my rule). I had my manicure scissors so I said I'd check my suitcase. He said no, we'd switch bags and he'd check mine because my flight was leaving a little earlier. I got picked to go through extra security. Just when the guy lifted the suitcase up, I realized it was full of men's clothes. Eeek! So I explained it was my husband's. He didn't go through the suitcase! Ten minutes later, hubby comes strolling up to my gate with my suitcase. What happened to my scissors? I ask. They didn't find them, he says. This was about 5 years ago. Does it matter what the rules are if no one is following them? Never mind my dd accidentally going through security with large bottles of all the liquids she needed for a 2 week vacation. No one noticed. I could tell ten more stories right now if I wanted to bore you to death. So what is the point of all this security? But I don't understand the rule about knives.

Delia DeLeest said...

TSA is a joke. My family has flown a lot over the years and have had a variety of contraband items in our bags by accident that went through without a problem. There are so many things that can be used as a weapon that I don't think a ban on small knives is going to save a single person. TSA isn't going to prevent another 9/11, passengers will. That said, the next attack isn't going to come via the airlines, it's too easy to go someplace, a mall on Black Friday, subway during rush hour, etc. You can't protect everyone from everything, the chance of something happening to you is so minuscule that worst case thinking will only make you a prisoner of your own making. We've just got to learn to not be scared rabbits and to fight back.

Marianne Stephens said...

Why allow this now? I see no reason for it. If people want knives/scissors/whatever when they fly, put them in stored luggage.
For Pete's sake...where's the sanity in changing this?

Sandy said...

Carly, my husband doesn't call the TSA nicompoops for nothing. lol

Delia, I agree that we can't let anyone scare us from doing the things we want to do. But, let's not be silly either. Sorry, but passengers can't prevent everything, and they shouldn't have to.

Marianne, I agree with putting small knives and scissers in stored luggage. What a novelty to have such a simple solution.