Hands up, fliers

It’s not exactly a strip search, but if you’re going to fly, get ready to have another part of your body scrutinized.

The Transportation Security Administration will begin randomly swabbing passengers’ hands at airport checkpoints to test them for traces of explosives, CNN reported Wednesday.

The TSA has been swabbing some passengers’ hands since the Christmas Day attempted bombing of Northwest Flight 253 and will expand the program in the next few weeks, CNN reported.

“The point is to make sure that the air environment is a safe environment,” Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano told CNN.

What do you think of this? Will it discourage you more from flying? How far is too far? Or is it just a sign of the times that you’re willing to adjust to?

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21 comments Add your comment

Berue

February 17th, 2010
2:39 pm

What if one had just pleasured themselves and had explosive residue on their hands? Would that be detected?

BeachBum

February 17th, 2010
2:39 pm

Once again, in the name of political correctness, the general flying public will be inconvenienced. I fly through the Atlanta airport somewhere between 20 and 30 times a year. On my first flight this year, I had the opportunity to go through the body scanner (feel sorry for the person who had to see those images), and it wasn’t a big issue. This is not going to be an issue, unless I have done something that gives a false positive. And yes, it does happen. I had an air cast that gave a false positive at LaGuardia and it took nearly 20 minutes for them to release me.

Random searches are laughable when there is no statistical or informational tendency to the selection of those searched. I know so many people want to yell about how “wrong” profiling is in these situations, but let’s face it, law enforcement has to do this to solve crimes, and to prevent them. If you have a legitimate profile of a potential terrorist, then that is who you submit to extra scrutiny. This is not racially motivated, but based on demographic and trending data.

Mark

February 17th, 2010
2:40 pm

It’s absurd. The statistical probability that the TSA will swab the one out of who-knows-how-many million air passengers who has explosive residue on his hands and intends to blow up an airliner is incredibly minute. On the other hand, they’re likely to get so many false positives that an already chaotic TSA security system will come closer to its inevitable breakdown.

DHD

February 17th, 2010
2:41 pm

How stupid is it to announce that they are doing this? How stupid is it to run this story? All you’ve done is give a warning to the terrorists. Nice job, AJC.

yerfdog

February 17th, 2010
2:48 pm

Yes it will be an inconveniance, but it is a a sign of the times. The bigger question is will the TSA add more personnel at ATL to ensure that wait times aren’t increased any more. Nothing is more frustrating than to stand in long lines waiting to be screened when more lanes could be opened if the TSA had their scheduling better balanced.

crackbaby

February 17th, 2010
3:11 pm

Stupid F-ing idea. TSA is a bunch of dolts. Airports are miserable places. Stop washing your hands with glycerin soap or it will cost you an extra 30 minutes in security hell.

Troublemaker

February 17th, 2010
3:16 pm

Make sure you don’t handle any nitrate based fertilizer before you fly. Because of airport hassles – mostly TSA – my minimum is now 8 hours. If the drive is less than 8 hours, drive rather than fly. Want to try for 12?

crackbaby

February 17th, 2010
3:33 pm

BTW – very funny, Berue ;-)

Jim

February 17th, 2010
3:33 pm

Stupid, stupid, stupid. Just when you think that the TSA cannot think less about the traveling public knowing most of their efforts are for show, they come up with yet another idiotic, inane time consuming wasteful gesture.

How about just simply profiling based on the lunatics who are trying to destroy us? Racial profiling of potential terriorists–YOU BETCHA! And I am a liberal, tree huging, gun control freak Democrat!

ccw

February 17th, 2010
3:40 pm

If this is like the gunshot residue test it will catch: military, law enforcement, hunters, concealled carry guys, the guy working at fireworks stand for the holidays, etc… So 99% of true positives will less than useless. Grab the ATL chief of police or a general fom Ft Benning e.g. What a great plan!

Tom

February 17th, 2010
3:45 pm

It just boggles my mind to watch how much deeper we continue to delve into “political correctness” in this country, while it is falling down around our ears. To catch a bear, you don’t search for rabbits, foxes, etc, you hunt for BEARS! Good grief………

Shannon

February 17th, 2010
3:48 pm

What good is it going to do? They won’t actually swab the hands that matter because that would be “racial profiling.”

Shea

February 17th, 2010
4:14 pm

it’s pretty stupid to ANNOUNCE what you are going to use as preventive measures, now people will know to thoroughly clean their hands! DUH!

Andrew

February 17th, 2010
4:15 pm

Next they will start swabbing your (OPP). Come on. How stupid can you get?

gforce

February 17th, 2010
4:17 pm

This is a case of stupidity breeding more stupidity… the same brainless monkeys working as TSA agents are no better than the minimum wage idiots most airports hired prior to the TSA formation. The only difference… we are paying these idiots with tax our dollars.

Beretverde

February 17th, 2010
4:22 pm

Completely dysfunctional. The TSA is horrific. He who defends everything… defends NOTHING! Profiling is the basic block for security. Common sense is needed! PCing just enables the ENEMY. WE ARE NOT THE ENEMY! Soap and water will defeat this program. Well… clean terrorists will at least not be spreading the H1N1 virus! What a bunch of morons. Hold their heads in shame… TSA… (Thousands Standing Around).

youtellm

February 17th, 2010
4:22 pm

I eat my bbq with my bare hands and not good cleaning up. Hope they don’t mind my mustard base bbq sauce in northern airports…LOL

King Donko of Punchstania

February 17th, 2010
4:31 pm

Typical government genius at work. Aside from the detrimental effects of good hygiene on this program, consider the fact that it’s rarely the moron that is carrying the explosive device that actually made the explosive device. Think about it- if the enemy’s best bomb makers were constantly blowing themselves up in attacks, how long could they possibly manage to be a sustained threat? The best method of detection is profiling based on appearance and country of origin- sorry to all of you P.C. Betty’s out there, but that is a fact. Deal with it.

aps

February 17th, 2010
4:33 pm

What do you expect? TSA is a “GOVERNMENT” entity.

Courtney

February 17th, 2010
4:43 pm

They tested this in Orlando and my mother tested positive because she just used the bathroom and used their soap, their own soap throws off the results. Hopefully this was fixed.

TnGelding

February 17th, 2010
7:37 pm

Man wasn’t meant to fly, and the TSA is out to prove it. No problem, as long as they target the most likely evil-doers.