Newark security: proactive or disruptive?

These guys never catch a break. A by-the-book private security guard at Newark International Airport was compared to a “prison guard” by NY Times travel columnist Joe Sharkey. Intent on enforcing carry-on luggage size, the guard apparently hassled a young lady as she waited to reach the metal detectors. And, it must have been bad. The people in line seemed to side with the traveler. Usually, we blame the carry-on carrier. So, the situation must have been pretty awful.

While this may look like a case of poor customer service – or even just rude behavior – the problem is actually much worse. Outgoing Transportation Security Administration head Kip Hawley says in the article, “In the hurly-burly and the infinite variety of travel, you can end up with nonsensical results in which the T.S.A. person says, ‘Well, I’m just following the rules.'” Wow, it sounds like he’s flown lately!

The guard , it seems, caused a “needless disruption,” which is what outgoing Hawley hopes to see prevented. These disruptions, apparently, make it easier for terrorists to compromise security. Of course, what could be more dangerous than an oversized carry-on?

[Via NY Times]