If TSA head John Pistole could have had his way, the chart above would be in use by now.
But after months of criticism from pilots, flights attendants, airlines, legislators,members of the public and a slew of others, Pistole decided that passengers will not be allowed to carry small knives, souvenir novelty bats, hockey sticks and other previously banned sports items back onto planes as carry-on items.
Here’s how the TSA described the decision:
“After extensive engagement with the Aviation Security Advisory Committee, law enforcement officials, passenger advocates, and other important stakeholders, TSA will continue to enforce the current prohibited items list. TSA’s top priority continues to be expansion of efforts to implement a layered, Risk-Based Security approach to passenger screening while maximizing resources. ”
As you may imagine, all manner of groups that were opposing the plan – already delayed from its scheduled late April roll-out – expressed their pleasure with John Pistole’s decision:
“We commend the TSA for revising its policy,” said Veda Shook, president of the Association of Flight Attendants International. “Terrorists armed only with knives killed thousands of Americans on 9/11/2001. As the women and men on the front lines in the air, we vowed to do everything in our power to protect passengers and flight crews from harm and prevent that type of atrocity from happening ever again.”
“This decision is the right one for the safety and security of every Transportation Security Officer, airline passenger and aviation employee,” American Federation of Government Employees National President J. David Cox Sr. said in a statement.
“We applaud this as a victory for common sense,” said Gregg Overman, spokesman for the Allied Pilots Association.
And here’s some of what Paul Hudson, President of FlyersRights.org, had to say:
“Hopefully, the TSA has learned the lesson that transportation security policies affecting many millions of air travelers need to be fully vetted with all stakeholders, not made just on internal deliberations and secret lobbying by those with special financial interests or insider connections.”