Keep your shoes, jackets on: TSA to expand pre-screening program

By Aaron Cooper, CNNUpdated 5th September 2013
More airports around the United States will soon allow passengers to go through security without removing their shoes, light jackets, and belts.
The Transportation Security Administration is expanding its expedited screening program called PreCheck to 60 new airports by the end of the year and is increasing the number of lanes for the program at the 40 airports that currently offer it.
PreCheck passengers also can leave laptops and small liquids in their carry-on luggage.
Right now only very frequent fliers invited by their airlines and passengers who are members of U.S. Customs and Border Protection's trusted traveler programs can participate.
TSA says later this year it will launch an application process to allow passengers who want to join PreCheck to pay $85, verify their identity and provide fingerprints at an enrollment center.
In 2012, a passenger traveling from Miami International Airport attempted to transport 163 marine tropical fish, 12 pond slider turtles, 22 invertebrates, 24 live coral pieces, 8 pieces of stony corals with mushroom polyps and 8 pieces of soft coral to Maracaibo, Venezuela. Transportation Security Administration officers discovered the animals, and the passenger surrendered the items to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Check out what other strange items travelers have attempted to get past airport security, according to the TSA's blog.
A House sub-committee held a hearing to try to figure out why misconduct at the TSA was up 26% over 3 years.
Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Hawaiian Airlines, United Airlines, US Airways and Virgin America currently participate in the program. JetBlue and Southwest will begin taking part when they are "operationally ready," according to the TSA.
PreCheck is part of a larger effort by TSA to move to security based more on risks that certain passengers may pose.
"As TSA continues to move away from a one-size-fits-all approach to transportation security, we are looking for more opportunities to provide the most effective security in the most efficient way possible," TSA Administrator John Pistole said in the news release announcing the expansion.
To see the list of participating airports, go here.
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