US travelers will be allowed to carry liquids on planes again

This is a small step forward away from security theater ploys that don’t do anything to actually make us safer. I’ve already written a lot about how improbable the original liquids on a plane attack was, but many people don’t believe what I’ve written or what I’ve linked to that others have written. Apparently someone in the government has taken some time to find out the feasability of actually bringing down an airplane via liquid explosives and found it’s probably not that easy and that even if it were attempted, it would take a bit more liquid than people typically carry on board.

Because of these findings, the government has relaxed the no-liquids ban to instead be a limited liquids rule with the allowance of small amounts of brought-from-home liquids as well as beverages purchased inside airport screening from “trusted” shops.

The new rules were announced during a late-morning news conference at Reagan National Airport. The previous, stricter ban was instituted last month after a plot to bomb jets flying into the United States was foiled.

The government said liquid explosives remain “an ongoing part of the terrorists’ playbook,” but officials said Monday that a total ban on carryon liquids is no longer necessary.

Transportation Security officials said three ounces of toiletries and medications can now be carried through security — as long as they all fit into a sealed one-quart zip-top plastic bag.

All liquid toiletry items, such as lip gloss and hand lotion, had previously been confiscated at security checkpoints. Now, the products are expected to be put in clear plastic bags at the checkpoint, screened and returned to the passenger if they pass screening.

Under the revised rules, passengers also are allowed to take aboard beverages and duty-free items as long as they are bought in stores past the security checkpoint.

Of course, this now gives airport vendors to bend you over and dry rape you even more if you get thirsty. But we know no US vendor would ever take advantage of a captive audience purely for the sake of greater profitability, would they?

Along with this change in rules is a loosening of the carry-on bag restrictions, as well. Of course, with all the exploding laptop batteries lately, we might soon find we can’t take our laptops on board without removing the battery first, but that one actually has a much better rational behind it, so I’ll have trouble arguing against it.

[tags]Loosening of liquids on airplanes ban[/tags]