And oddly, for reasons he has yet to discern, lots of harmonicas. (They're just fine.) --- E-mail
TSA lingo -- the abbreviated version
Like many bureaucracies, the Transportation Security Administration has defined an alphabet soup of abbreviations. A guide to the lingo:
TSO Transportation Security Officer. The airport personnel who scan bags and bodies ETD Explosive Trace Detection equipment. Reads swabs taken from items to detect trace amounts of explosives IED Improvised Explosive Device. An explosive that can be assembled once past security with seemingly innocuous components, hence the recent ban on liquids and gels. Explosive Detection System. Scans for explosives in checked bags. VAP Voluntarily Abandoned Property. Banned items stopped at security checkpoints. The most common are cigarette lighters (37,000 a day, nationwide), which are disposed of as hazardous waste. Non-hazardous items are given to state agencies for surplus property. ETP Explosive Trace Portal, aka puffer or puff portal. A machine that dispenses puffs of air and analyzes for traces of explosives
TSA by the numbers
Year TSA was created
The agency's annual budget
Current number of screeners
Number of screeners in 2002
$23,000 to $56,400
Federal screeners and supervisors at Newark Liberty Int'l Airport say a new security threat looms: fatigue.
It could be a tough season when the volume of travelers soars later this month for Thanksgiving.
X-ray devices show carry-ons in 3-D
The items represent another day's work for several dozen early-shift Transportation Security Administration officers who act as a vital line of defense at the nation's sixth-busiest airport.