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Tag: TSA

Owner of Gigantic Lobster Angry That TSA Photographed ‘Dinnah’

Giant lobster posted on the TSA's Twitter account.

Giant lobster posted on the TSA’s Twitter account.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Georgia man is irate after discovering that his 20-pound lobster was photographed by TSA agents and went viral on the agency’s Twitter account.

“They are dumb,” Christopher Stracuzza told the New York Times of the TSA. “They are like the dumbest people in the world.” 

While on a trip to a market in Connecticut, Stracuzza bought 12 standard lobsters and the gigantic one.

The 32-year-old auto-body repairman spent $700 on the lobsters, which he planned for a cookout at his home in Savannah, Ga.

Stracuzza checked a cooler with the lobsters with his luggage at a Boston airport. When he arrived home, he noticed the cooler had been tampered with.

Then a friend told him his giant lobster was posted by a TSA agent and another official on the agency’s official Twitter account.

“We share images through social media to provide helpful travel tips and to better inform the traveling public about T.S.A.’s mission,” an agency spokesperson told the New York Times.

Other Stories of Interest

Former TSA Chief John Pistole Under Consideration for Top FBI Job

John Pistole/fbi photo

John Pistole/fbi photo

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

John Pistole, the former TSA chief who had been appointed by President Obama, is now being considered for the position of FBI director, CNN reports. 

Pistole, who was named deputy FBI director in 2014, met with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to talk about the position over lunch. 

What’s unclear is whether Pistole is interested in the job, especially after President Trump has repeatedly attacked the intelligence community and tried to get the former FBI director to pledge allegiance to him. At least five people under consideration for the job have withdrawn their names.

In the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks, Pistole ran the FBI’s counterterrorism division.

TSA Warns of Potential for Terrorists to Steal Trucks to Plow into Crowds

Photo via Wikipedia.

Photo via Wikipedia.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The TSA warned the nation’s trucking companies and their drivers to be careful because terrorists are increasingly using stolen trucks worldwide as a method of attack.

The six-page report, obtained by CBS News, indicates that terrorists killed 173 people and injured another 667 in 17 vehicle-ramming attacks worldwide. 

The most deadly vehicle-ramming attack came in Nice, France last year, when at least 84 people were killed by a truck that drove through a crowd celebrating Bastille Day.

The report warns of indicators that suggest terrorists are planning to resort to vehicle-slamming in the U.S.

The American Trucking Association issued this statement to CBS News: “There is no more dedicated, professional and patriotic group of people than truck drivers, so our industry is disturbed by the possibility that someone would use our vehicles as weapons.Much of what is in this TSA guidance – avoiding area of congestion due to special events, exercising awareness of suspicious activity and practicing common sense safety and security habits – are already hallmarks of industry best practices. The commercial trucking industry deploys significant security measures like vehicle tracking, alarms and specialized locks, as well as ongoing driver awareness training and driver vetting.”

TSA: Southwest Airlines Pilot Caught with Loaded Gun in Carry-on Bag

Southwest Airlines

Southwest Airlines

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A pilot for Southwest Airlines was arrested Monday after security at Albany International Airport said they found a loaded handgun in his carry-on bag.

The TSA said Erick Gibson, 55, of New Orleans, was charged with a misdemeanor count of possessing a weapon.

The .380-caliber handgun, which was loaded with six bullets, was spotted at a security checkpoint.

The TSA said Gibson was released on $200 bail, and the flight to Chicago was delayed by four hours.

It wasn’t immediately clear why Gibson had the gun.

TSA Screener Fired for Missing Loaded Handgun at Airport in Georgia

airport-people-walkingBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The TSA fired a screener who missed a loaded handgun in a passenger’s bag Sunday morning at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in Georgia.

Katrina Jackson, of Alabama, said she had no idea the gun was in her bag. When she later opened her bag to get her passport, she spotted the .38-caliber handgun and immediately notified officials, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports.

The TSA responded in a statement: “This egregious mistake was unacceptable and the officer who was still a probationary employee was immediately and permanently separated from federal service.”

So far this year, screeners at the airport have found 48 guns before they left the security area. The total seized guns last year was 198.

Other Stories of Interest

Sen. Schumer: Trump’s Plans to Cut TSA Budget by 11% Is Dangerous

airport scanner 2By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

President Trump’s plans to cut 11% from the TSA’s budget would “spell real trouble for security,” Sen. Chuck Schumer said Sunday.

The cuts are meant to free up money to increase funding for immigration enforcement programs and the construction of a wall along the Mexico border.

Schumer, D-N.Y., called the cuts a “cash raid for the borer wall,” Newsday reports. 

“You’re not going to quietly pillage the federal funds that protect New York on my watch,” said Schumer, who serves as the Senate Minority Leader, directing his message at the White House.

Under Trump’s plans, the Coast Guard also would be cut by 14%.

The TSA cuts would eliminate a $20 million program to train flight crew members in firearms training in the event of a hijacking. The plan also calls for cutting $45 million in grants for local law enforcement to increase patrols in and around airports.

Other Stories of Interest

Trump Proposes Cuts to TSA, Secret Service, FEMA to Pay for Border Wall

Donald Trump, via Wikipedia

Donald Trump, via Wikipedia

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Donald Trump wants to free up money for his border wall by mulling cuts to the Coast Guard, TSA, Secret Service and FEMA.

The budget reductions would cut deeply into notable national security and emergency response initiatives, ABC News reports. 

Under the proposal, the administration would cut $1.3 billion from the Coast Guard’s budget, which is a 14% reduction over last year.

TSA stands to lose more than $500 million, and FEMA would be cut by $370 million.

But whether Trump can get Congress to approve the reductions is an entirely different story. Republicans and Democrats questioned the wisdom of the budget cuts.

“The White House needs to go back to drawing board with its budget and produce something to Congress that is workable, realistic, and, most importantly, keeps our country safe,” said Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Mississippi, the top Democrat on the House Homeland Security Committee.

Other Stories of Interest

TSA Warns Local Police about More Invasive Physical Pat-Downs at Airports

Airport crowdBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The TSA is beginning to conduct more invasive physical pat-downs at airports nationwide, but it’s not entirely clear what that will entail.

But the agency informed local police of the new procedures because of suspicions that passengers will complain about “abnormal” federal frisking, Bloomberg reports.

Bloomberg wrote:

The decision to alert local and airport police raises a question of just how intimate the agency’s employees may get. On its website, the TSA says employees “use the back of the hands for pat-downs over sensitive areas of the body. In limited cases, additional screening involving a sensitive area pat-down with the front of the hand may be needed to determine that a threat does not exist.”

Now, security screeners will use the front of their hands on a passenger in a private screening area if one of the prior screening methods indicates the presence of explosives, according to a “security notice” Airports Council International-North America (ACI-NA) sent its U.S. members following a March 1 conference call with TSA officials

“Due to this change, TSA asked FSDs [field security directors] to contact airport law enforcement and brief them on the procedures in case they are notified that a passenger believes a [TSA employee] has subjected them to an abnormal screening practice,” ACI wrote.