Saturday, December 26, 2009

Joe Brancatelli's info and comment about traveler security:

As usual, veteran business travel writer Joe Brancatelli has up-to-date information and authoritative comment on the latest air security issues. Below is an email he sent to subscribers to his very useful web site

11:30 am Saturday, December 26, 2009

Dear JoeSentMe member:
     By now, you might be finally hearing about an attempted terrorist attack on a Northwest flight nearing Detroit after flying from Amsterdam. This happened yesterda, Christmas Day. Details remain sketchy and conflicting, but there seems to be no doubt that this one was real. As far as we know, however, a single individual was involved. He is in custody after detonating some type of device in-flight.

     Of most immediate interest, however, is how the Transportation Security Administration will react. It does seem clear that the individual on the plane was on government no-fly lists and that he managed to smuggle dangerous material on board. In other words there was a security failure. And, as you would expect, the TSA will probably take it out on US by tightening airport security rules.

     There has been no official annoucement of any change from the TSA, but, oddly, the first immediate reaction seems to be on transborder flights originating in Canada. Both Canada=based airlines, Air Canada and WestJet, have advised travelers that 1) they are now limited to ONE carry-on bag; and 2) passengers will be subject to secondary screening, pat-downs and hand inspection of the carry-on bag. Both airlines have posted information about the new rules on their respective websites.

     Needless to say, even without more rules, expect more changes at the security checkpoints, more invasive procedures, etc.

    Obviously, I will feed you more details as I get more specific and accurate information. This is an odd situation made odder by the fact that it is the holidays and folks were mostly out of touch.

     If you are traveling in the next day or two, assume the worst: More screening time, more annoyances, etc. I would advise you pack as little as possible in your carry-on bags and carry as few bags as possible with you. It's going to be a very confusing few days.

     Joe Brancatelli //

Posted via email from Doug's posterous

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