New pat-down rules in effect at TIA, airports nationwide

Passengers at Tampa International Airport during the Memorial Day weekend. File photo


TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – The Transportation Security Administration just implemented new pat-down rules at airports nationwide.

The new rules are intended to find any weapons possibly concealed on the body or hidden in clothing.

In the past, different kinds of pat-downs were used if a person set off a metal detector or alarm.

Now, the new comprehensive pat-downs will be used.

“I do find it a little bit of an invasion of privacy,” said passenger Kristine Seitz of Oldsmar.

Seitz is mindful of the importance of safety and security measures.  She tells News Channel 8 she was on board a plane on Sept. 11, 2001.  It later landed in Washington, D.C.

“I understand the need for concern. And I think they have to apply some common sense,” she said.

The new pat-downs must be completed by a person of the same gender and can involve any parts of the body including the breasts, groin and buttocks.

“This is not anything that’s going to benefit security and that all it does is turn the checkpoint into a place of indecency,” said passenger rights advocate Douglass Kidd.

A 2015 study found the TSA failed in 67 of 70 attempts to find concealed items when passed through check points.

That’s a 95 percent failure.

“I travel a lot between Michigan and here. Whatever is going to keep people safe is what I’m all about,” said passenger Andrew Bemish.

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