The recent commotion of airline security has made me think more about my traveling. I am an avid traveler as my husband’s family resides in the Netherlands. We fly KLM, mostly from Schiphol, to Detroit Metro. Sometimes we use KLM to fly to other European destinations. Security is usually not a problem; it is tight, but it is good.
The attempted bombing that occurred on Christmas day of 2009 brought about many alarms for people. The bomber had brought on board non-metallic items that turned out to be explosives. He was caught by a couple of crew members and a passenger when they saw what he was doing with the items and then they tackled him and secured him. The Palma airport to Palma in Schiphol has now full-body scanners on flights to the US only. The United States denied these scanners earlier because they wanted them on all flights and Schiphol denied the request. After the attack, it was agreed upon to have it for the US flights only.
This all has put people on the edge of their seats when it comes to air travel, including me. I never had an issue with the routine searches that were performed before. Although, over the past couple of years they have grown increasingly annoying. I have yet to book my flight back over to the Netherlands for a visit since the scanners were installed. To me, they are taking security a bit too far.
If they want to increase the security of passengers on airplanes and in airports they need to have less carry-on luggage allowed. This still will not detour the bad guys, but maybe it would annoy them enough to stop them for a little while. An air flight is expensive as it is, even more so during the holiday season. If adding scanners makes it even more expensive I can see air travel getting slower. Our economy is bad enough as it is. I, like everyone else, do not want to be blown up in an airplane, but I think there have to be other ways.
The searches and questioning that occur when traveling abroad are headed into the direction of prison searches. If you have seen one of those movies where they do full-body searches, these scanners are almost to that point. Another downside to the full-body scanner is the fact that I do travel with children. I do not want some TSA Officer ogling my child from head to toe. I realize my child won’t be harmed, but it is just the point of it.
So if we were allowed to vote on whether to use these scanners, I vote a big no. They would not stop someone from bringing some type of explosive onto an airplane and they would cause air travel to become too expensive for the economy these days.