The Transportation Security Administration announced last week that, starting April 25th, they will allow small knives in carry-on bags for the first time since 9/11. There are still restrictions including no razor blades or box cutters, the blade cannot be longer than 2.36 inches, the width can be no bigger than 1/2 inch, the knife cannot have a molded grip, and the knife cannot have a locking or fixed blade. These new rules also allow you to carry on golf clubs, baseball bats, lacrosse sticks, pool cues, ski poles, and hockey sticks. The TSA is standing by their decision, even with all the backlash:
The Flight Attendants Union Coalition started a petition to reverse the policy change on The White House's website. The Coalition of Airline Pilot Associations also objects to the new rules.
Delta's CEO wrote a letter to a TSA administrator expressing concern over the new rules. He says allowing these items on planes would be an additional risk and they would not greatly affect the flow at security checkpoints.
Senator Charles Schumer of New York wants the rule to be reversed. He believes these items are dangerous and have not become any less dangerous since they were first prohibited. He also believes TSA agents will be distracted having to measure knife blades.
The TSA's Chief plans to defend the new policy today in Congress. So far they have defended their decision by saying the presence of gun-carrying pilots dressed as passengers, federal air marshals, and airline crew members trained in self-defense add layers of protection to protect against any misuse of the newly allowed items on planes. However, this is not true for all flights.
These restrictions sound confusing to me, but then again I do not know that much about knives. I truly believe no knives should be allowed in carry-on bags and golf clubs, baseball bats, and other sports equipment shouldn't be allowed on either. These items can be dangerous and the TSA should be protecting its passengers and the flight crew. What do you think about the new rules? Should they be reversed or do you not see any danger in allowing them?
Attend World Low Cost Airlines Americas April 9-10, 2013 at the Westin Colonnade in Coral Gables, Florida.