TRANSPORTATION SECURITY ADMINISTRATION
Mom, child had knives inside Darth Vader stuffed bear at Philadelphia airport, TSA says
“This is a good example of why we cannot assume that something as innocent-looking as a child’s stuffed animal is not a risk to security,” TSA’s federal security director for the airport, Gerardo Spero, said.news.yahoo.com
Chief Justice John Roberts rejects request to block air travel mask mandate
Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts on Thursday dismissed an emergency request to block the federal mask mandate for air travel amid litigation in the lower courts.Driving the news: Michael Seklecki, a Florida resident, filed a lawsuit against the Transportation Security Administration on behalf of himself and his 4-year-old son, and Lucas Wall, from Washington joined the suit, all citing medical reasons.Get market news worthy of your time with Axios Markets. Subscribe for free.The governmenews.yahoo.com
Man takes flight to Miami with loaded gun in his pocket
A man flew on an American Airlines flight from Bridgetown, Barbados, to Miami carrying a loaded firearm with him in the plane's cabin, according to NBC 6.The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is investigating the security breach, which has prompted concern by experts in aviation safety. Cameron Hinds, the man who allegedly carried the gun onboard the plane, was stopped at a TSA checkpoint in Miami International Airport when officers...news.yahoo.com
A rail conductor asked a passenger to put a mask on. Then the rider attacked him, police say.
Instead of adhering to the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority’s mask mandate for riders regardless of vaccination status, Daniel Libby allegedly attacked the rail conductor who asked him to wear a face covering onboard.washingtonpost.com
Airlines, cruise lines and hotel stocks fall on virus fears
Air travel in the United States hit another pandemic-era record over the weekend as vacationers jammed airports, but shares of airlines, cruise lines, hotels and almost anything else related to travel are tumbling on growing concerns about highly contagious variants of coronavirus.
Travel sector sell-off, airlines, cruises, hotels tumble
Air travel in the United States hit another pandemic-era record over the weekend as vacationers jammed airports, but shares of airlines, cruise lines, hotels and almost anything else related to travel tumbled Monday on growing concerns about highly contagious variants of coronavirus. The Transportation Security Administration said it screened more than 2.2 million people at airport checkpoints on Sunday, the highest number since early March 2020, when the pandemic was beginning to crush travel in the U.S. That topped a record set just two days earlier and was the fourth peak recorded in July. Stocks were down broadly out of concern over rising infections in many countries, and airline and cruise line stocks were hit especially hard.news.yahoo.com
TSA will resume self-defense training for pilots and crew as FAA announces more than $100,000 in fines for unruly behavior
The Federal Aviation Administration announced it would pursue fines against passengers in eight incidents, while the Transportation Security Administration said its officers had been assaulted in two separate incidents.cbsnews.com
It's not just flight attendants dealing with unruly passengers: airport security face assaults too, the TSA said. One passenger is accused of biting 2 TSA officers, and faces a $14,000 fine.
The TSA also said a passenger in Louisville stands accused of attacking two of its security officers while trying to jump an exit lane.news.yahoo.com
Flight attendants will get self-defense lessons to protect themselves from violent passengers, the TSA said, as reports of unruly flyers reach record highs
The TSA said self-defence training would "deter assaults against officers and flight crew." Reports of unruly passengers are at record levels.news.yahoo.com
After cutting 30% of their support staff, American Airlines is now asking corporate staff to volunteer to help in DFW airport this summer, amid a surge in travel
Volunteers would work six-hour shifts from June to August helping customers find their way around the airport and assisting at ticketing stations.news.yahoo.com
US air travel rises to highest levels yet since pandemic hit
(AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)Across the United States, air travel is recovering more quickly from the depths of the pandemic, and it is showing up in longer airport security lines and busier traffic on airline websites. "Our last three weeks have been the best three weeks since the pandemic hit, and each week has been better than the one prior,” American Airlines CEO Doug Parker said Monday. However, the airlines still have far to go before travel fully returns to pre-pandemic levels. Since the pandemic hit, air travel has picked up a few times — mostly around holidays — only to drop back down. The airline said people are booking leisure trips to beach and mountain destinations but business travel is still lagging.
The Latest: All Duke University undergrads must quarantine
(AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)DURHAM, N.C. -- Duke University issued a quarantine order for all of its undergraduates effective Saturday night due to a coronavirus outbreak caused by students who attended recruitment parties, the school said. The university said in a statement that all undergraduate students will be forced to stay-in-place until at least March 21. Suspension or dismissal from the school are potential punishments for “flagrant or repeat violators.”Over the past week, the school has reported more than 180 positive coronavirus cases among students. AdItaly has now tallied some 3.2 million cases in the pandemic. The COVAX alliance aims to share COVID-19 vaccines with more than 90 lower and middle-income nations.
TSA agents find twice as many guns per million passengers at airports in 2020 compared to previous year
FILE - In this June 10, 2020 file photo, Transportation Security Administration agents process passengers at the south security checkpoint at Denver International Airport in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents found twice as many firearms per million passengers at airport security checkpoints nationwide in 2020 compared to 2019. MORE | Top 10 Airports with total guns found by TSA in 2020That came as total passengers screened in 2020 fell by 500 million. Dallas came in second with 176 and at Denver International Airport agents found 104. According to the report agents at Jacksonville’s International Airport intercepted 36 guns in checked bags in all of 2020, 24th highest in the country.
TSA looking into adding Capitol rioters to US no-fly list
Federal safety officials are investigating people who took part in last week's riot at the U.S. Capitol to decide whether they belong on the federal no-fly list. The assessments are one of several steps federal agencies are taking to increase security before President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration next week. The assessments could result in rioters being added to the federal no-fly list, the person said. The FBI said earlier this week it was considering adding Capitol rioters to the federal no-fly list but stopped short of saying that individuals were being scrutinized. Airlines and Washington-area airports also have promised tighter security after last week’s riot at the Capitol by supporters of President Donald Trump.
VIRUS TODAY: Huge study on another COVID vaccine is underway
Administrative worker Sander Edmondson, left, hands a COVID-19 testing kit to a woman at a testing site in Los Angeles, Sunday, Dec. 27, 2020. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Here’s what’s happening Monday with the pandemic in the U.S.:THREE THINGS TO KNOW TODAY— A huge study of another COVID-19 vaccine candidate is getting underway Monday as states continue to roll out scarce supplies of the nation’s first shots. Some 30,000 volunteers are needed to prove if this vaccine — a different kind than its Pfizer and Moderna competitors — really works and is safe. — Homicides in Detroit, New York, Philadelphia and other U.S. cities have topped 2019 numbers as violence surged during the coronavirus pandemic. ___Find AP’s full coverage of the coronavirus pandemic at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic
The Latest: China tests millions in port over virus cluster
(AP Photo/Emrah Gurel)BEIJING — Authorities in China’s northeastern port city of Dalian are testing millions of residents after seven new coronavirus cases were reported there in the last 24 hours. It has a deal to secure up to 100 million doses of the potential vaccine produced by AstraZeneca. Koca said the first shipment of three million doses of CoronaVac would be shipped to Turkey on Sunday and arrive Monday. He said Turkey could get 4.5 million doses until the end of March and would have the option buy up to 30 million doses. Indonesia has reported nearly 700,000 COVID-19 cases, the largest caseload in Southeast Asia and second in Asia only to India’s 10.1 million confirmed cases.
Fewer passengers but more guns intercepted at some Florida airports, TSA says
With far fewer passengers traveling through Florida airports in 2020, the Transportation Security Administration said it’s seeing a disproportionate number of guns being intercepted by agents compared to previous years. Several airports -- including Miami International, Destin-Ft. Walton Beach and St. Pete-Clearwater International -- have had more guns stopped at TSA checkpoints than the same time last year, despite much lower numbers of travelers, TSA reported. At Jacksonville International Airport and some others around the state, fewer guns have been taken, but the numbers are still higher than expected based on the decreased traffic through the airports, TSA officials said. The gun must be declared to the airline at check-in, unloaded and placed in a locked, hard-sided case, TSA explained. “Certainly during a global pandemic, travelers are facing stress, but please know where your gun is before you head to the airport,” said TSA spokesperson Sari Koshetz.
TSA officers finding more guns at airports in spite of fewer passengers
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. Transportation Security Administration officers found three times as many guns at airports this July than the same month last year. TSA says the rate is particularly surprising since there were about 75% fewer passengers in July 2020 over the previous years volume. In July 2019, TSA reported finding 5.1 guns per million people screened. This July, TSA officers detected 15.3 guns per million people screened. So far this year, 20 guns have been intercepted at Jacksonville International Airport including one on Wednesday and one on Thursday.
Air traffic is down, gun seizures up at US airports
With air traffic nearing a five-month high, airport security is finding guns in passenger carry-on bags at three times the rate recorded before the pandemic. The discoveries at airports comes at a time when U.S. gun sales are surging, and analysts believe many of those purchases are being made by first-time buyers. “Fear drives a lot of gun sales,” he said. National Rifle Association spokesman Andrew Arulanandam said higher gun sales were due to widespread concern that, first because of the pandemic and later because of protests and riots, police might be slower to respond to emergency calls. It was the first time checkpoint traffic in U.S. airports has topped 800,000 since March 17.
Reports: TSA insider faults agency's response to coronavirus
The top TSA official in Kansas, Jay Brainard, says the TSAs actions amount to gross mismanagement." The special counsel has ordered TSA's parent agency, the Homeland Security Department, to conduct an investigation. Brainard filed his whistleblower complaint on June 3, and the special counsel on Thursday ordered the Homeland Security Department to investigate the allegations. By law, the special counsel only takes that step when it believes there is a substantial likelihood of wrongdoing. The special counsel will review Homeland Securitys findings and issue a report to the White House and Congress.
TSA intercepts gun at Jacksonville International Airport
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. A gun was intercepted by security at Jacksonville International Airport over the weekend. The gun found Saturday was one of six firearms confiscated in six days at airports throughout Florida, according to the Transportation Security Administration. Thats why the agency is reminding travelers to pay attention to whats inside their luggage and pockets, so they can move safely through security checkpoints without stopping for extra searches. If a gun is brought to the TSA screening checkpoint, the passenger will be interviewed by police and may be going to jail instead of to their desired destination, a TSA spokesperson said. TSA officers have intercepted 141 guns throughout Florida this year, including 12 in Jacksonville.
Planning to travel soon? The changes you can expect at JAX airport
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. The Jacksonville Aviation Authority launched a new program aimed at protecting the health and safety of passengers traveling through Jacksonville International Airport ahead of the summer travel season. The new initiative, called JAX Airport Cares means travelers should expect to see changes if they head to the airport. Mandatory temperature checks for JAA employees: JAA employees are required to have temperature screening conducted prior to starting work shifts. "Keep possession of your boarding pass. Place the boarding pass over the scanner, then show your boarding pass and ID to the TSA officer, said Brian Cahill, Transportation Security Administration federal security director for northern Florida.
Businesses ramp up operations as nations prep for tourists
Five restaurants continue to operate with enhanced off-premise service only, while nine restaurants remain temporarily closed. Transactions at fast food restaurants were down 17% the week of May 24, while transactions at sit-down chains were down 49%. CENTRAL GOVERNMENTS & BANKS: Spains national statistics office said that it received zero international tourists in April. That compares with 7 million tourists that spent 7 billion euros ($7.8 billion) in Spain in the prior-year period. Istanbuls 15th century Grand Bazaar, museums, gyms, child care centers and nurseries, were among other venues allowed to resume operations.
Retailers reopening more stores, tourism expanding
The chain began to reopen stores earlier this month and expects most stores to be open in mid-June. TJX Canada began reopening stores in some provinces this week, and stores in Germany, Austria, Poland, the Netherlands and Australia are fully open. Victorias Secret said Thursday its closing 250 stores in the next few months, about a quarter of all its stores. The sales drop was the largest one-month decline since a 22.5% fall in July 2010. The Finance Ministry said imports fell 7% to 6.1 trillion yen ($57 billion) from 6.6 trillion yen.
TSA releases list of airports where dozens of screeners tested positive for coronavirus
The Transportation Security Administration released a list and map of airports where employees tested positive for coronavirus in the last two weeks. The information released Sunday shows 61 screening officers tested positive for COVID-19. An additional 22 non-screening employees tested positive for the virus over the same period. TSA did not provide recommendations for what people should do if they traveled through the affected airports during the dates indicated. According to the TSA’s latest checkpoint travel numbers, 203,858 people were screened at checkpoints across the country on March 26.
TSA halts employees from using TikTok for social media posts
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Transportation Security Administration said Sunday it has stopped allowing employees to use the China-owned video app TikTok to create social media posts for the agency after the Senate’s top Democrat raised concerns about potential national security issues. Schumer also cited a Department of Homeland Security policy prohibiting TikTok on agency devices. He also noted in the letter that Chinese laws compel companies to cooperate with China’s government and intelligence collection. Over the past few months, the agency has posted a number of videos reshared on other social media platforms such as Twitter, which have amassed hundreds of thousands of views. The agency said it never directed viewers to TikTok or published content directly to the platform, despite videos reposted on other TSA social media accounts having the TikTok logo in the bottom of the screen.
Flying anywhere next year? Here's another reminder to check your license for that star
Were now just under the one-year mark before REAL ID enforcement begins in the United States. What about an enhanced license? Answering your REAL ID questions | Got a gold star on your license? The time to prepare is now.Preparing, by the way, might be as simple as opening your wallet and taking a peek at your current drivers license. Heres what you want to look for:Photo: tsa.govIf you have an enhanced license, youre all set.
Woman boards Delta flight without ticket or identification
Delta Airlines via CNN(CNN) - Authorities are investigating how a woman managed to board a Delta Air Lines flight from Orlando to Atlanta without identification or a boarding pass. The Orlando Police Department said in a statement that officers responded to a suspicious person report Saturday morning at the airport. Officers asked the passenger for identification and for her boarding pass. She said she had thrown her ticket away and did not have Identification, the police statement said. Delta Air Lines apologized to Flight 1516 passengers in a statement "for the delay after a person not ticketed for that flight was removed from the aircraft."
Delta: Woman without ticket boards flight in Orlando
ORLANDO, Fla. - Delta Airlines says a woman was able to board one of its planes at a Florida airport without a ticket and was removed, delaying the flight. Delta says its working with law enforcement and with the Transportation Security Administration on their investigation. The Orlando Sentinel reports that Delta employees asked for her ticket because she was in someone elses seat. Orlando police Lt. Wanda Miglio says the woman said she threw her ticket away and didnt have identification. A TSA official told the newspaper that the woman went through security.
Energy regulator warns of blackouts if gas pipeline were attacked
Neil Chatterjee, chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, warned that an attack on even a single US natural gas pipeline could cause mass blackouts. "Today, we have eight or nine generators depending on a single gas pipeline." TSA's pipeline security branch has just six full-time employeesThe Government Accountability Office has recently identified "weaknesses" in TSA's pipeline security program, including severe staffing limitations that prevented the agency from conducting security reviews. The GAO found that the pipeline security branch employed just six full-time employees last year. The GAO also found that the pipeline security branch has not updated its risk assessment on the top 100 critical pipeline systems since 2014.
Travelers routinely try to get weapons past TSA
While most of these items can travel in checked luggage, none of them are allowed in carry-on luggage, said Lorie Dankers, a spokesperson for TSA. We have not allowed knives since the inception of TSA. Between 42,000 and 63,000 passengers pass through TSA checkpoints at Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport each day, she said. Of those 253 firearms, 225 were loaded and 84 had a round in the chamber, according to the TSA Blog. Seven of those firearms -- all loaded, four with a round in the chamber -- were found in carry-on bags at Phoenix Sky Harbor, according to the blog post.
This TSA blog will open your eyes as to what's really being confiscated at airport security
These look niceAnd then there are these flowers, pictured above, which were found at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport in late July. Knives, by the way, are allowed in your checked bag. I can guarantee that the civil penalty will be more than the cost of a checked bag, Wagner said. Pictured above, bottom row are:An empty grenade, found in a screening at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport on July 25. "The most common explanation we hear from travelers for prohibited items is 'I forgot it was in my bag,'" Wagner wrote.
TSA officers on leave after discovery of racist display
Two Transportation Security Administration officers have been placed on leave after a racist display was found inside a TSA workstation at Miami International Airport. (CNN) - Two Transportation Security Administration officers have been placed on leave after a racist display was found inside a TSA workstation at Miami International Airport. Three TSA officers discovered two stuffed gorillas tied together and hanging with a noose on July 21, according to four TSA employees with knowledge of the situation and a picture obtained by CNN. A veteran Miami TSA officer who asked that his name not be used for fear of retaliation said he was upset about the incident, which he says has many of Miami International Airport's black and Hispanic TSA officers distraught. "Two TSA officers have been placed on administrative leave while the investigation is ongoing."
TSA agents find unusual souvenir: a missile launcher
TSA via CNN(CNN) - TSA agents are used to finding strange and alarming objects in travelers' luggage, whether it's snakes, switchblades or swords. The latest addition to that list: a missile launcher. The agents at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport made the discovery Monday in the checked bag of a man who was coming back from Kuwait. Unfortunately for would-be souvenir hunters, the TSA notes that "Military weapons are not permitted in checked or carry-on bags." The missile launcher was given to the state fire marshal for disposal, and the man was released in time to catch his flight.
Toddler Tumbles Onto Baggage Conveyor Belt and Takes Wild Ride at Atlanta Airport
A toddler broke his hand after clambering onto a luggage belt and taking a tumbling trip into the bowels of Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. The 2-year-old's frantic mother said she had been printing out a Spirit Airlines boarding pass when her child, Lorenzo, ran off and bolted behind an unstaffed ticket counter, then flung himself on the moving conveyor belt. I hope he's OK. I hope he's just enjoying the ride.''' Two employees enter the frame of the video just as the toddler slips from view, pointing and trying to see where the child went.