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Old Oct 9, 10, 11:47 am   #391
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Quote:
Originally Posted by InkUnderNails View Post
I performed a self-directed positional opt out today at the C Terminal in TPA.

It was very slow with only 8-10 PAX clogging the two open lines.

I was directed to the TDC in the middle in line with the NOS. As soon as my Nexus was ok'ed, whoopee!, I saw that a way over to the right, about 30 feet, was a WTMD lane with a a couple of PAX feeding stuff into the operating Xray. I casually walked over and got in that line far away from the NOS. I was watched as I moseyed over, but was otherwise unmolested.

So, no NOS for me today!
Good

I've been lucky this year, having flown over 100K miles without having to opt-out, but I know that will change very soon. I did spread the brochures around DEN the other night, so I hope that encourages some people to opt-out in the future..
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Old Oct 9, 10, 6:42 pm   #392
  
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Originally Posted by oldjonesy View Post
We can always tell the americans. They are the ones standing in line to go through the metal detector machine thingo - in their socks, shoes in hand.

...Looking ridiculous
We flew BNE LAX yesterday on QF15. This is exactly what we saw - Americans putting their shoes into the bins to the chagrin of the staff. At one point it was so bad they announced to everyone in line to keep their shoes on unless told otherwise.

No NOS anywhere in sight, and BNE has now gone to Kippie bags at the initial checkpoint, but there is no longer a mandatory secondary search at the gate, only a selective one. But there was a heavy presence of Australian Federal Police K9 units all over the departure area and the terminal. They were very thorough but went out of their way to be friendly to all the passengers as they did their sweeps up and down the rows of seats and the lines of passengers. The dogs checked everyone but inobstrusively. It seems to me this is a very effective method for detecting the underwear and shoe bombers of the world without invading privacy if the dogs can indeed detect those kinds of explosives at a short distance.

Last edited by FoothillFlyer; Oct 9, 10 at 6:44 pm Reason: spelling
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Old Oct 9, 10, 6:45 pm   #393
  
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Originally Posted by FoothillFlyer View Post
We flew BNE LAX yesterday on QF15. This is exactly what we saw - Americans putting their shoes into the bins to the chagrin of the staff. At one point it was so bad they announced to everyone in line to keep their shoes on unless told otherwise.

No NOS anywhere in sight, and BNE has now gone to Kippie bags at the initial checkpoint, but there is no longer a mandatory secondary search at the gate, only a selective one. But there was a heavy presence of Australian Federal Police K9 units all over the departure area and the terminal. They were very thorough but went out of their way to be friendly to all the passengers as they did their sweeps up and down the rows of seats and the lines of passengers. The dogs checked everyone but inobstrusively. It seems to me this is a very effective method for detecting the underwear and shoe bombers of the world without invading privacy if the dogs can indeed detect those kinds of explosives at a short distance.
we have had to do the ridiculous 100ml & baggie thing for international flights since 2007 - thanks to requests from our 'friends'
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Old Oct 9, 10, 10:01 pm   #394
  
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I was at BWI C a couple of times in prior months, each time during an off-hour when everyone was being herded through the NoS. First time I opt out, they ask why. Unprepared to answer, I just say, "No way I'm going through that thing. Don't like it. No thanks." Wish I'd read the witty answers that others have posted since. Male assist (clearly a trainee) is immediately available. Second time, I go through the WTMD and stand aside for ~5 minutes, shifting slightly to see my luggage better.

Unfortunately, everyone else around me was choosing the NoS. Signs were up, but most probably didn't realize what it was. Then again, being BWI, it could just have been the DC mentality. "It's for our safety..."

To be fair, both pat-down searches were done professionally and with courtesy. They didn't want to be giving it any more than I wanted to be taking it.

Quick tip: when a TSO barks, "Take everything out of your pockets!"...hang on to your wallet since you're going to opt-out anyway. It doesn't trigger the WTMD, and it stays where it should--in my pocket, not 50 feet away, unsecured, at the end of an X-ray belt. Prior to the pat-pat, inform TSO of the wallet. No one's ever complained...nor should they.
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Old Oct 9, 10, 10:09 pm   #395
  
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Yesterday at ATL all of the NOSs were shut down. And the TSOs were actually friendly and polite.

Go figure.
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Old Oct 9, 10, 11:49 pm   #396
  
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Originally Posted by SirFlysALot View Post
Yesterday at ATL all of the NOSs were shut down. And the TSOs were actually friendly and polite.

Go figure.
This happened just prior to the snowball fight in hell.
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Old Oct 10, 10, 8:44 pm   #397
  
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Originally Posted by gatelouse View Post
I was at BWI C a couple of times in prior months, each time during an off-hour when everyone was being herded through the NoS. First time I opt out, they ask why. Unprepared to answer, I just say, "No way I'm going through that thing. Don't like it. No thanks." Wish I'd read the witty answers that others have posted since. Male assist (clearly a trainee) is immediately available. Second time, I go through the WTMD and stand aside for ~5 minutes, shifting slightly to see my luggage better.
Looking at your program memberships, I have to assume you were talking about BWI D, not C. I have yet to see a WBI deployed to the C C/P (only A/B/D have them, the last time I wandered the airport - unless they hid it in the far right-hand corner of the C C/P).
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Old Oct 10, 10, 9:34 pm   #398
  
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Fell into the trap at LAX as I had not flown out of there in 4 months...flown out of DEN and MCO and did not encounter a scanner
I am somewhat jetlagged arriving from the east coast very late last night --slept a bit and off for 1 week to Australia.
it was fairly quiet at LAX terminal 6 and after being told to remove my belt (what has never set off a metal detector) ended up in a scanner --did not see any opt out signs....
I was peering over all the time making sure someone did not get my computer, phone etc....as the stuff piled up whilst they waited the scan results,,,and that was unclear and they had to pat down my right leg and arm anyway.
At least at UA at LAX the TSA staff have been extremely courteous---but now I can see that there is the opt out option
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Old Oct 10, 10, 11:48 pm   #399
  
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Originally Posted by DevilDog438 View Post
Looking at your program memberships, I have to assume you were talking about BWI D, not C. I have yet to see a WBI deployed to the C C/P (only A/B/D have them, the last time I wandered the airport - unless they hid it in the far right-hand corner of the C C/P).
Oops! Thanks for the correction. I meant the BWI UA concourse which is in fact D. There are at least two NoS here.
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Old Oct 12, 10, 8:11 am   #400
  
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Well, "lucky" me, had my second opt-out in less than 2 weeks yesterday.
DFW - Terminal D, first class/elite line. Well, "line" is not accurate because there was not a single traveler except me at this CP.

NOS did not appear to be in use but as I prepared to go through the WTMD, a smurf barked " take everything out of your pockets and step over here" pointing at the NOS.

I said "No". Fortunately no attitude or attempt to persuade me; the TSO simply radioed for a female assist. When I asked for my belongings to remain within my sight, another TSO gathered everything and brought it over. TSO performing the frisk was polite and efficient.

However, after my second frisk in two weeks, I am becoming even more concerned about the rapid deployment of these. Both of my opt-outs have really bothered me; even though the TSO this time behaved professionally and this was not an enhanced patdown, it really disturbed me to have to allow someone to run their hands over my body just to get on a plane.
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Old Oct 12, 10, 11:51 am   #401
  
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Was forewarned

YYZ T1 US Departures around 1pm today. Got the dreaded SSSS on my boarding pass, but was forewarned, because Air Canada would not print my boarding pass on-line.

I'm the first to criticize CATSA and TSA, but I have to say (grudgingly though I feel about it), that I had an excellent CATSA (are they CATSO?) person. She was fast, efficient, respectful, asked me to wait while she got new gloves, made the moat dragon move my bags to where I could see them, told me I had the option of the NoS or a pat down, and allowed me to choose, and told me what she was going to do then paused while she waited for a response from me. Respectfully patted down with minimal fuss.

Must admit I have NEVER had someone like that in any security line, anywhere.

On the plust side, because I was forewarned, I checked a bag and my carry-on was light and well vetted.
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Old Oct 12, 10, 7:00 pm   #402
  
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'Quad S' they call it in DEN

This UA ticket (RT) purchased through the TA of my company.

Last night, OLCI'd, but it would not let me print or do electronic BP.

Show up this morning, go to 1P line, print my BP no problem. I had never heard of SSSS, or 'quad S' to use appropriate TSA lingo, but it was printed on my BP.

Went through security in DEN no problem. Nobody noticed the quad S. Early to the gate, situated well to avoid the crowd and board when 1P is called (let me digress Aggressive GA SHUT DOWN all attempts at early boarding if it was not yet your turn. A few 1P's tried following GS/F/1K down the red carpet and she closed it off and told them they were in the wrong line and needed to board through economy - 'the blue carpet'.)

Anyway, hand her my boarding pass and get a bad beep from the machine. She tries it again. beep. 'You cannot board, you need to go over to the counter and talk to the agent there.' I do. He tries a few things, calls his supervisor, but the quad S is still there when he reprints. He has to call the TSA. Meanwhile, group 1. group 2. group 3. My overhead storage is history... group 4. standby passenger boards. Will I even get on the plane?

TSA finally shows up. A woman. She can not give me the necessary pat down, even though I tell her I'll waive my right to a male TSO. (I need to make this flight, and now they even boarded a couple of employees travelling in the jump seats and the door at the gate is closed...)

TSA male arrives. Take off shoes, belt, empty pockets (all right in front of the gate. I declined his offer to do the pat down in a private place because then I would have surely missed my flight). He gives a the thorough pat down, 'I am going to use the back of my hands' etc. He did not miss anything.

He finally finishes, and I run over to the door with my shoes and belt in hand. I beg them (UA) to open it, and the sympathetic GA still out there with me calls in for permission and they say go ahead. Run down the jet way, door about to close. 'Sir, there is no room in overhead you are going to have to check both - both are small - your bags.' I tell them one will fit under the seat (which it did), but they would not let me on with the other.

Get on the plane, they close the door right behind me and we push back.

Bottom line, once this situation arose at the gate, I think everyone there - both TSA and UA GA's - did the right thing. TSA seemed to take forever to arrive, but I'm sure it seemed like that because I was watching everyone else board ahead of me...

UA GA checking people in should not have let me on without secondary - she did not. UA guy behind the counter tried a couple of things, but he was not able to clear it without TSA. GA's might have even stalled a bit to make sure I had time to get on. Both TSO's very professional. She went through my bags and he frisked me.

The main screw up was back at security - it was a 'breach' to allow me through without secondary, since I had the quad S on my card.

I was a little annoyed with the flight crew too. My second bag was the smallest possible garment bag you can imagine with one pair of pants and one shirt. I asked if they could hang it in F and they said no. Now I had to go to baggage claim to retrieve it when I landed. Oh well.

Another side note - one of the TSO's commented that quad S is starting to come back again, and that they were going to have to retrain security to be on the look out for it and send quad S's to secondary.
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Old Oct 12, 10, 8:28 pm   #403
  
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Originally Posted by LarkSFO View Post

Another side note - one of the TSO's commented that quad S is starting to come back again, and that they were going to have to retrain security to be on the look out for it and send quad S's to secondary.
This is three in the last 24 hours as I noted in another thread.

So the TSA lied to us when they said that SecureFlight would essentially eliminate the SSSS.

I suspect this is part of the coming November idiocy.
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Old Oct 12, 10, 9:28 pm   #404
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Originally Posted by LarkSFO View Post
....
The main screw up was back at security - it was a 'breach' to allow me through without secondary, since I had the quad S on my card.

I was a little annoyed with the flight crew too. My second bag was the smallest possible garment bag you can imagine with one pair of pants and one shirt. I asked if they could hang it in F and they said no. Now I had to go to baggage claim to retrieve it when I landed. Oh well.

Another side note - one of the TSO's commented that quad S is starting to come back again, and that they were going to have to retrain security to be on the look out for it and send quad S's to secondary.
Nonsense. A "breach"??? Come on now Who cares if you have SSSS - heck, I used to use Liquid Paper and a photocopier to remove those from my home-printed BPs.

The UA system has no idea whether or not you've been given a secondary - who knows why it beeped. You could have just lied to the agent and told them you were 'fully inspected'.

What exactly did the TSA buffoon do with your shoes at the gate? Use his x-ray vision to check them for hidden explosives?

Nobody did the "right thing" - they wasted your time and my money.
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Old Oct 12, 10, 10:20 pm   #405
  
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SSSS & the TSA in DEN

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Originally Posted by bocastephen View Post
Nonsense. A "breach"??? Come on now Who cares if you have SSSS - heck, I used to use Liquid Paper and a photocopier to remove those from my home-printed BPs.

The UA system has no idea whether or not you've been given a secondary - who knows why it beeped. You could have just lied to the agent and told them you were 'fully inspected'.

What exactly did the TSA buffoon do with your shoes at the gate? Use his x-ray vision to check them for hidden explosives?

Nobody did the "right thing" - they wasted your time and my money.
Well... I agree it was an unenjoyable waste of 5 people's time. And therefore money.

I don't lie to the GA's or the TSA... I guess somebody with bad intent would though and they wouldn't know any better. So in essence the system burdens honest people while not necessarily deterring the dishonest ones.

I also look unfavorably on modifying a BP and would not do it myself... (and in this case, .bomb let me OLCI but would not let me print or send to mobile. Sounds like they closed that hole in the system...)

I understand some of the dissatisfaction with TSA and their people, policies, and procedures. But what is a workable - safe and effecient - alternative? Boca - you're clearly among the most seasoned travellers here - what is the ideal balance between safety / effeciency / lack of personal intrusion? (I'll go look for this thread on FT after I hit send.)

The did a very thorough visual inspection of my shoes (and belt and luggage). What did that accomplish? Draw your own conclusions...
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