Monday, August 14, 2006

Carryon Luggage

As I had hoped, the British have a pretty reasonable response to the hand-luggage bans.

The Home Secretary, John Reid, admitted that the checks at airports were not "indefinitely sustainable" as thousands of travellers endured a fourth day of disruption. And late last night, the government announced the security threat at UK airports had been downgraded from "critical" to "severe".

The downgrade will mean passengers will be able to carry one item of hand luggage for most flights, but would still be banned from carrying liquid onto flights.

The TSA has relaxed their screening just a bit, as well -- liquid medicines are allowed, lipstick is back on the 'allowed list', although gels (including insoles and baby teething rings) and other liquids are still not allowed.

There is still some sense that the US forced the hand of British authority and that the arrests were premature -- and the much-touted "link" to al-qaida is pretty damned thin. But that's the terminology that gets Americans all hot and bothered, so you can sure it's what is showing up on all the headlines. Ah. well.

I hope that we'll be back to "normal" soon.

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