December 28th, 2009
02:49 PM ET

How will travelers be affected by terror alert?

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/TRAVEL/12/28/terror.alert.advice.international/t1larg.texas.security.airport.getty.jpg caption="YA TSA officer screens airline passengers at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport December 27, 2009 in Dallas, Texas" width=416 height=234]


International air passengers face tightened security on U.S.-bound flights following the alleged attempt by Nigerian Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab to bomb a Christmas Day flight heading for Detroit.

U.S. travel and security authorities, international airlines and airports and aviation organizations have all moved quickly to implement a range of measures that will impact travelers' normal routine.

Which flights are affected by the new measures?
At present only flights to the United States are affected.

What are the measures?
The Transportation Security Administration, which oversees the security for U.S. travel, says it has issued a directive for additional security measures to be implemented for flights as they leave their last stop before the United States.

The authority has not made public the directive. But it said in a statement that passengers can expect to see extra security "at international airports such as increased gate screening including pat-downs and bag searches. During flight, passengers will be asked to follow flight crew instructions, such as stowing personal items, turning off electronic equipment and remaining seated during certain portions of the flight."

Individual airlines and airports will each interpret the TSA directive in their own way. But anecdotal advice suggests that passengers are not allowed to leave their seats for the bathroom or to access luggage during the final hour of any flight, nor keep blankets or pillows on their laps.

Keep reading...

Filed under: Terrorism • Travel
soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. Isabel Siaba

    Interestingly, in 2003 when I went to the U.S. was much more rigorous the security in the airport than in May this year. Over the years, this rigor can not and should not be left out ... this is a safety issue for all of us!

    December 28, 2009 at 8:09 pm |
  2. Tim Gibson

    Aside from the false sense intended with not being allowed to leave your seat during the last hour of a flight, what prevents a disaster at any other time during a lengthy international or even a bi-coastal national flight.

    Anyone who has traveled by air is well aware that people do not obey the seat belt signs during air travel and freely move about the aircraft at their choosing.

    As well, with individual airlines and airports interpreting the directive in their own way there remains yet another flaw in an across the board procedure for safety to our people and our nation.

    This was a terrorist attack upon our nation and our people and the terrorist, who failed in his mission, is given the highest level or medical care for injury he inflicted upon himself as well as given a lawyer to defend his actions and his intentions. Should he or his family not be paying the cost for a lawyer in the least aside from the fact that this individual should be treated as an enemy of our nation and put under military tribunal.

    December 28, 2009 at 6:01 pm |