Flying – Security Checks and PowerBooks

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Date: Tuesday, November 27th, 2001, 00:00
Category: Archive

A follow-up to our previous story on New Airport Security Procedures for Laptops.

[Paris] I recently returned from flying to Europe via LAX and Frankfurt. This was 2 weeks and 6 weeks after 911. I was not required to remove my PowerBook from my carryon bag, although in Frankfurt my bag got x-rayed 6 times over 4 different checkpoints. Sometimes they did dual passes.


A follow-up to our previous story on New Airport Security Procedures for Laptops.

[Paris] I recently returned from flying to Europe via LAX and Frankfurt. This was 2 weeks and 6 weeks after 911. I was not required to remove my PowerBook from my carryon bag, although in Frankfurt my bag got x-rayed 6 times over 4 different checkpoints. Sometimes they did dual passes.

John said he just got back from the East coast and the scans are more hazardous now to your PowerBook. He said they were requiring all Laptops to be removed from their padded cases and passed through the X-Ray machine, all while one is getting patted down. John said the Laptops roll through the x-ray machine then slide down the ramp on the other side bashing into the other laptops. His latch now doesn’t function.

This kind of treatment guarantees there will be some sort of damage to a laptop. I don’t know what the answer is.

Earl says Burbank has started requiring the same thing, although at Burbank they provide padded little trays to placed your laptop in as it navigates the x-ray conveyor belt and the ejection slide. I recommend placing your wallet and stuff in your carryon bag and let it go through the x-ray as a consolidated mass. John said he had to remove his wallet after his bag went through, place it on the conveyer, then it went out of his site through the x-ray machine on its own (no crate, no bag, etc.) Luckily it was sitting there when he got done getting patted down which can take some time.

I hope something can change to allow Laptops to go through in a padded bag or we’ll start seeing some expensive damage soon. In the past a laptop was inspected at an airport and was dropped shattering the display. In the past someone checked their laptop and it too arrived with a shattered display. Don’t ever check-in a laptop – even if padded in the middle of a suitcase.

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