TSA Confusion on Medical Shoes/Appliances

Old Oct 8, 07, 9:28 pm
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TSA Confusion on Medical Shoes/Appliances

I posted on a separate thread regarding going through with broken toes about the problem I had at EWR with my walking cast. I was told that unless it was "Screwed into my leg" I had to take it off. After speaking with the TSA (I also contacted several media agencies and was told EWR as usual) they said there was no such policy and apologized.

Today, my 6th airport in 4 days, I arrived at my home airport IAH and after setting off the alarm, was told I'd have to "take it off". I asked when the policy changed and she told me she was told yesterday. The female assist came to me and was told my TSA at detector that I would have to take it off. She asked "When did that start" and was told "Today". I said I wanted to see the change in writing. My female assist went to her supervisor and told me they would just need to swab it since it was a new rule (covering). They had no written directive they could show me.

I immediately got on the phone with TSA and they told me no rule existed. I told them they needed to get this taken care of because I was tired of being hassled when tsa.gov was clear on what is acceptable through the checkpoint.

He agreed and apologized. Also, I was asked what happened to me and what was wrong with me.
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Old Oct 9, 07, 12:01 am
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I think I would have printed out the TSA policy on orthotics and casts and carried it with me and showed them they were wrong. God what idiots.

airline brat
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Old Oct 9, 07, 12:14 am
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I've pulled it up on my phone and showed them and they just say "Oh, it hasn't been updated yet".

I love the make your own rules thing. I was tired and cranky this morning and was happy to miss my flight to make a point. Fortunately for me, it didn't come to that. I'm becoming cranky in my old age
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Old Oct 9, 07, 7:52 pm
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Baglady, you are kind to call it "confusion." It really is ignorance of their own basic rules.
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Old Oct 9, 07, 8:43 pm
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Originally Posted by AirlineBrat53 View Post
I think I would have printed out the TSA policy on orthotics and casts and carried it with me and showed them they were wrong. God what idiots.

airline brat
i carry it with me and it has never failed me and as you all know, "goalie is the orthotic ter'wrist"

Originally Posted by baglady View Post
I've pulled it up on my phone and showed them and they just say "Oh, it hasn't been updated yet".

I love the make your own rules thing. I was tired and cranky this morning and was happy to miss my flight to make a point. Fortunately for me, it didn't come to that. I'm becoming cranky in my old age
that is a baloney sandwich on the part of the tsa and it should be reported

Originally Posted by CPT Trips View Post
Baglady, you are kind to call it "confusion." It really is ignorance of their own basic rules.
and where some will say ignorance is bliss, when it comes to the tsa, ignorance is sop .
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Old Oct 11, 07, 3:00 am
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Please God, rid us of these TSA idiots!
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Old Oct 11, 07, 7:46 am
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Originally Posted by baglady View Post
Also, I was asked what happened to me and what was wrong with me.
I hope you told him it was as illegal for him to ask in his professional capacity as it was for a screener to demand that you remove your aircast.
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Old Oct 11, 07, 11:49 am
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they were wrong and they need to do what the tsa folks did at san (ua gates) yesterday (10/10).

me: "i'm wearing orthopedic shoes and orthotics"
tsa: "male assist, no alarm"
swab and go

pax who went thru the wtmd before me wearing a "frankenstein boot" (aka the post surgery walking boot like i used to have).

the person alarmed due to the metal on the boot.

the boot (which is removeable) stayed on and the pax rec'd full pat down and swab of the boot in various places and that was it. no questions were asked re: "can you remove it", "what happened" etc., other than the screener saying "it's gotta be tough travelling with the boot"

i asked for the tsa supe on duty and complimented him and his staff and told him that i wish all airports followed the std procedure they way his staff did .
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Old Oct 11, 07, 2:23 pm
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Originally Posted by goalie View Post
they were wrong and they need to do what the tsa folks did at san (ua gates) yesterday (10/10).

me: "i'm wearing orthopedic shoes and orthotics"
tsa: "male assist, no alarm"
swab and go

pax who went thru the wtmd before me wearing a "frankenstein boot" (aka the post surgery walking boot like i used to have).

the person alarmed due to the metal on the boot.

the boot (which is removeable) stayed on and the pax rec'd full pat down and swab of the boot in various places and that was it. no questions were asked re: "can you remove it", "what happened" etc., other than the screener saying "it's gotta be tough travelling with the boot"

i asked for the tsa supe on duty and complimented him and his staff and told him that i wish all airports followed the std procedure they way his staff did .
It's a pity I don't travel through SAN! When I've been asked what is wrong with me or what happened to me, I just ignore them. I've been amazed how many TSAs ask me when I know they should not be. Especially when they ask me in front of other pax. Other times I feel like making up far fetched stories just to watch their reaction
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Old Oct 11, 07, 3:09 pm
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Originally Posted by baglady View Post
It's a pity I don't travel through SAN! When I've been asked what is wrong with me or what happened to me, I just ignore them. I've been amazed how many TSAs ask me when I know they should not be. Especially when they ask me in front of other pax. Other times I feel like making up far fetched stories just to watch their reaction
for me, it all depends on the screener and their 'tude.......where they are not allowed to ask, if they are courteous and professional, i'll tell them but every so often, i get "one of those that truly gives tsa screeners a bad name" (and no offense meant or intended to those who are good at their job ) and i flat out tell them that they are forbidden by federal law to ask me anything about my medical condition. i then wait for their reaction and based on what happens next, i will push it to a supe and leo if need be. but to be compeltely fair, i have been running in to mostly "the good kind of screener" as opposed to the jerks.
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Old Oct 13, 07, 4:34 am
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WOW, I really do work with some stupid people.
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Old Oct 13, 07, 12:47 pm
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Originally Posted by tsadude1 View Post
WOW, I really do work with some stupid people.
You needed this board to figure that out?
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Old Oct 13, 07, 4:24 pm
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Originally Posted by tsadude1 View Post
WOW, I really do work with some stupid people.
any chance you could set 'em right (there's a whole bag of tootsie-pops in it for you)
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Old Oct 14, 07, 1:54 am
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I've been dealing with one of the renegades at SFO for the past three Saturdays. I go through, no alarm, it is clearly announced to her and she still gives me the full search. I ask if he she didn't hear the screener there was no alarm and she ignores me and continues to give me directions, including the evil roll your waistband down. Again I remind her that if there is no alarm, all she is supposed to do is an ETD swab. Still she ignores me and continues to give me orders as to what to do. Okay, so I kinda had it with her this morning. I stood there, getting fed up with this crud and turned it into an American Idol moment and burst out into song. It was an inspired selection I learned probably in the third grade...My Country Tis of Thee. There's nothing quite like singing about liberty and freedom in the absence of such.

Of course I asked for yet another complaint form and told the useless supervisor what she had done. His response was that he'd have to ask her. He couldn't care less. I'll be flying again next Saturday so I'd better rehearse the rest of the song.
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Old Oct 14, 07, 10:54 am
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Originally Posted by doober View Post
I hope you told him it was as illegal for him to ask in his professional capacity as it was for a screener to demand that you remove your aircast.
Can someone cite the exact law(s) and section(s) on this? I'm convinced it's part of both ADA and HIPAA, but I'd like to know exactly where. I've looked but so far I have not found out...
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