Lambert fliers react to TSA policy allowing knives on flights


CBS News

Posted on March 6, 2013 at 11:48 AM

Updated Wednesday, Mar 6 at 2:05 PM

(KMOV) – A new TSA policy permitting knives to be in carry-on luggage on flights was getting mixed reviews at Lambert Airport on Wednesday.

Starting April 25, knives with blades no more than 2.36 inches in length from tip to where the blade meets the handle or hilt will be approved for carry-on.

The blade must be no more than half an inch in width.

The TSA also announced toy bats and sporting equipment such as hockey sticks and golf clubs will also be allowed on board aircraft.

News 4 talked to travelers at Lambert Wednesday morning and the change was getting mixed reviews.

“No, I’m not comfortable with people having knives,” said flier Matthew Shannon. “If I can’t have a pen in my pocket or an extra lighter without having to stand in a box and them look four ways and have them look at the inside of my body, that’s just foul.”

“I actually carry a pocket knife and I always have to put it in the bag I check so I would be okay with it,” said Jennifer Struckhoff

The changes were also opposed by two industry groups.

The Flight Attendants Union Coalition, representing nearly 90,000 Flight Attendants said the decision was “poor and shortsighted”.

“Continued prohibition of these items is an integral layer in making our aviation system secure and must remain in place,” said the union in a statement.

“As the last line of defense in the cabin and key aviation partners, we believe that these proposed changes will further endanger the lives of all Flight Attendants and the passengers we work so hard to keep safe and secure.

“Flight Attendants are the front line safety and security professionals on board every commercial passenger aircraft in this country and must be given the tools and training to protect ourselves, our passengers and the aircraft.”

The Association of Professional Flight Attendants, representing over 16,000 American Airlines employees, asked the TSA to re-evaluate the policy and questioned why “such a momentous decision” was made without consulting the group.

APFA “categorically rejects a proposal to allow knives of any kind in the cabin,” said Glading.

APFA Safety and Security Coordinator Kelly Skyles said relaxing restrictions on hockey sticks, golf clubs, and ski poles, meant “the potential for passengers getting hit with these items during boarding and deplaning. It’s a recipe for disaster.”